Pakistan invites foreign observers to monitor upcoming elections 'with riders'
Islamabad, Mar.20 : The Pakistan Foreign Office has invited international observers to monitor the general election being held in May. It, however, added that the observers would have to follow the requirements set for such missions.
This was announced by Foreign Office spokesman Aizaz Chaudhry at a special session where officials of the Election Commission of Pakistan, the ministries of foreign affairs, Interior and Information, unveiled the government policy concerning election observers and the code of conduct governing poll monitoring, reports The Dawn.
A full-scale international observation typically includes pre-election day observation, monitoring of day of polling and post-election follow-up.
Diplomats were assured that the government would do everything possible to facilitate the working of foreign election observers. But, at the same time, the diplomats were told that observers should not try to influence the electoral and political process.
A mechanism for accreditation of the teams of observers with the ECP has been devised which involves strict security clearances for observers to be deployed in the country by international bodies.
Several international bodies, including the European Union, have expressed keen interest in monitoring the polls.