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EU Calls For Level Playing Field In Ukrainian Parliamentary Elections

The European Union has called on the Ukrainian government to ensure that all political parties and candidates benefited from a level playing field and from a conducive election environment.

The call was made by EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton and Commissioner for Enlargement & European Neighborhood Policy Štefan Füle ahead of the October 28 parliamentary elections in Ukraine. "The parliamentary elections will be a litmus test of Ukraine's democratic credentials," they said in a joint statement on Friday.

They welcomed the stated commitment of the authorities to work closely with the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission and to ensure that the elections are conducted in line with international standards.

The electoral law adopted in November 2011 must be fully respected and applied in a way that maintains confidence in the fairness of the electoral process. The EU leaders noted that "the significant lack of political pluralism on television is very worrisome and requires immediate action to define clear procedures for media to ensure a balanced coverage as well as a body which is competent to monitor the compliance with rules and to provide for timely remedies."

"There is also an immediate need to ensure full transparency of the activities of the Central Election Commission, to clarify issues related to the composition of the District Electoral Commissions and precinct Electoral Commissions and to address the matter of overlapping competences in the election dispute resolution process," The EU leaders said.

by RTT Staff Writer

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