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Jimmy Carter Congratulates Myanmar on Sitting of New Legislatures; Carter Center Continues its Post-Election Observation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: In Atlanta, Soyia Ellison,
soyia.ellison@cartercenter.org
In Yangon, Frederick Rawski, Frederick.rawski@mail.cceom.org

In Burmese >

ATLANTA — The Carter Center congratulates the people of Myanmar on the sitting of the newly elected union and state/regional legislative assemblies. The results of the historic elections on Nov. 8, 2015, delivered a strong mandate to incoming representatives to press forward with Myanmar's ongoing transition from authoritarian rule to democracy.

"With the sitting of the new assemblies, Myanmar is experiencing another historic moment in its democratic transition," former U.S. President Jimmy Carter said. "Many challenges lie ahead. The peace process is incomplete; ethnic and religious divisions persist; and restrictions on freedom of speech and assembly remain. I encourage the incoming legislators to use this opportunity to advance reforms and fully commit the government to democratic principles and human rights."

President Carter visited Myanmar in April and September of 2013.  The Carter Center has been observing the political and electoral environment in Myanmar since 2014 and deployed a delegation of more than 60 observers during the November 2015 general elections. In itspreliminary statement, Carter Center observers assessed the conduct of voting and counting as positive in 95 percent of the polling stations visited on election day and acknowledged the important efforts of the Union Election Commission to make the electoral process more transparent.  It noted, however, that aspects of the electoral and constitutional framework are inconsistent with recognized international standards for democratic elections.

The Carter Center continues to deploy observers to assess the post-election environment and monitor the complaints tribunal process being conducted by the Union Election Commission. Later this year, the Center will release its final report on the observation of the 2015 elections, which will include detailed recommendations for the new government and legislators to consider while pursuing further reform of the electoral framework.

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"Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope."
A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in over 80 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care.  The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.

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