OSCE experts see no need for election monitoring –

The OSCE does not see the need to send international observers to Berlin for the February 12th re-election.


This is according to a report by the OSCE election office ODIHR. Berlin Mayor Franziska Giffe (SPD) said Tuesday’s announcement was a good sign. State Electoral Commissioner Stephan Brechler also stressed that he was “satisfied with the OSCE’s confidence in the learning capacity of Berlin’s political institutions.”

OSCE evaluates usefulness of election monitoring

Due to considerable breakdowns, the September 2021 parliamentary and local council elections will have to be repeated. Brechler invited an international observer group from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe for this purpose. Their subdivision, ODIHR, first sent a preliminary team in mid-January to see if it made sense to observe the election. They spoke with the Senate, election officials, Congress, political parties and associations and released their recommendations Monday night.

Great confidence in the competence of Berlin’s electoral authorities

“Based on the findings of this report, ODIHR does not recommend having election monitoring teams in these elections,” it said. The Berlin interlocutor adds that he is open to observing re-elections. But almost all of them felt that in this election he did not need the form of observation the ODIHR envisioned and would not be useful. The team noted that Berlin’s electoral authorities have great confidence in their ability to organize re-elections.

High standards for German elections

OSCE experts underscore the fundamentally high standards for German elections, including accurate preparation of voter lists and candidate lists, party and campaign finance rules, and media diversity. All interlocutors believed the “campaign environment was open and free,” the report said. Regarding the Berlin elections, “Despite the procedural deficiencies that led to the reruns of these elections, all interlocutors of the ODIHR team expressed concern over the independence of the electoral authorities and their ability to manage the upcoming elections. , including mail-in ballots.” The report cites the Interior and Senate Commission of Inquiry following the 2021 election failure and lessons learned.

Minor glitches in preparation for re-election

“This is probably also a positive middle ground,” said Mayor Giffey. “The state of preparation is very good, and the OSCE is holding it back.” Now she must focus on preparing for a smooth election, she said. “It’s happening right now,” she said, the SPD politician. In recent days, a small glitch has been made public in the run-up to re-election. With about 2.5 million voters and documents, Blechler said that minor mistakes cannot be completely avoided. The important thing was to fix them quickly.

Author: dpa/

Publication date: January 24, 2023

Last updated: January 24, 2023

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