Monday, June 20, 2005
Elections in breakaway regions
Parliamentary elections have been held in the disputed south Caucasus enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh, which seceded from Azerbaijan in 1991.
Around 106 candidates from seven parties are contesting 33 seats.
While Azerbaijan called the vote illegitimate, the territory's president has said he hopes it will boost its bid for international recognition.
Karabakh President Arkadiy Gukasyan promised an honest and transparent vote and warned against any actions which could harm the province's image.
"All attempts at violations, whoever the author, will be denounced and initiators punished with the full severity of the law," he said.
Results of the poll, which is being monitored by around 100 non-governmental observers, are expected late on Monday or early Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Moldova's separatist region of Transdniester is planning its own elections. Monsters and Critics reports:
The foreign minister of [Moldova's breakaway] Dniester region, Valeriy Litskay, has said that the parliamentary elections in the region will be held under its own laws [rather than Moldovan].
Having said that the OSCE has great experience in organizing elections in various hot spots, Litskay said that one of the main topics discussed at the talks today was what laws should be observed during the elections.
"It is obviously clear that this [election] is impossible under Moldovan laws. We reached understanding and the conclusion is that the election will be held under the Dniester region's laws, which should undergo an international examination," the minister said.
An agreement was reached recently on the participation of Ukrainian representatives in carrying out and monitoring the elections, Litskay said.
"Ukraine's position is as follows: all Dniester region residents should take part in the elections," Litskay said. Chisinau's stance that only Moldovan citizens can vote was not supported in Kiev, he said. Ukraine's stance is that "this doesn't correspond to democratic norms". Consultations on this will be continued in Kiev soon, Litskay said.