According to the co-chair of the Association for protection of electoral rights Alexander Brod local elections in Ukraine are riddled with massive violations.
“I can say that we didn’t even expect high-quality open democratic elections as for the last two years in Ukraine there have been continuous violations of human rights, persecution of opposition, restriction on freedom of the press,” Brod said.
The organization experts documented the violations even before the elections, including groundless refusals to register candidates, denying access to the media, attacks, beatings and other flagrant violations of the law.
In Brod’s opinion the Election Day was the culmination of the violations.
“Today, as we know, the polling stations in Mariupol didn’t open at all, as well as some of the stations in Ivano-Frankovsk, in Odessa the observers are being removed from the stations, there are appeals about the violations in Kiev, in some places there are even heads of electoral commissions who refuse to work and give their letters of resignation. So the elections are plagued with problems,” – the co-chair commented.
As for the voter turnout, in Kiev there is interest in the local elections, not so much in the other regions, he said. “I don’t think the turnout will be high as the population is trapped by the financial and economic troubles, the disarray among the political elites. The people understand that while the power is in the hands of that group of people, nothing will change on the regional and municipal level either, so I am convinced that these elections will not change, will not improve the political climate in Ukraine“, Brod added.
The expert pointed out that even the large numbers of international observers are not sufficient to ensure the security of the elections. He gave the example of an observer from Great Britain, who, according to the press, was robbed at the airport.
“Nevertheless we can see that the West and international organizations turn a blind eye to the violations of human rights in Ukraine and I think they will show a condoning attitude, but I will repeat once again that these elections are only for the chosen ones, for those who are loyal to the current Ukrainian regime and the ignore the interests of the voters and the opposition“, – Brod said.
Source: RIA Novosti