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The Carter Center Supports OSCE/ODIHR Decision Not to Observe Russian Elections

Contact: Deborah Hakes, 404-420-5124


Atlanta...The Russian Federation's conditional invitation to the Organization for the Security and Cooperation in Europe - Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) to observe its Dec. 2 elections to the State Duma placed unacceptable limitations both on the number of election observers permitted to monitor the polls and the duration of their observation activities. Such limitations appear to reflect broader Russian Federation proposals to restrict all OSCE/ODHIR observation missions. The Carter Center supports the OSCE/ODIHR decision not to observe the elections under these circumstances.

"The conditions placed on the OSCE/ODIHR by the Russian Federation run contrary to the fundamental principle that an election is more than a one day event. The OSCE commitments, to which all participating states agree, should not be diluted or weakened," said Jimmy Carter, former U.S. President and founder of The Carter Center.

International election observation groups have reached a common understanding of the fundamental elements of credible election monitoring, including that an observer organization should be free to determine the scope and scale of its efforts for a meaningful and credible election observation exercise.

The Carter Center, OSCE/ODIHR, and other organizations share a common commitment to the conduct of nonpartisan, professional election observation in accordance with the international standards outlined in the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, adopted in October 2005 at the United Nations.

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The Carter Center has observed 69 elections in 27 countries since 1989.The Center is a not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization working to advance peace and health worldwide by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; improving mental health care; and teaching farmers in developing nations to increase crop production. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, in partnership with Emory University. Please visit www.cartercenter.org to learn more about The Carter Center.

9 November 2007: The Carter Center Condemns Russian Federation Effort to Undermine Credible Election Observation

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