ISLAMABAD: Chief observer and German-origin member of European Parliament Michael Gahler Thursday said that a mission comprising around 100 observers would arrive Pakistan to monitor the upcoming general elections scheduled to be held on July 25.
Addressing a news conference in Islamabad, he said, “It is a great privilege to have been given the opportunity to lead once again the EU Election Observation Mission (EOM) to Pakistan for the upcoming election.” He said that the election on 25th of July marks an important stage in Pakistan’s democratic development and he is hopeful that their presence will contribute to a transparent electoral process.
Gahler explained that the mandate of the EU EOM is to observe all aspects of the electoral process and assess the extent to which the elections are in compliance with the laws of Pakistan, as well as with international and regional commitments for democratic elections to which Pakistan is a signatory.
He said that the mission is currently made up of a core team of 10 election analysts based in Islamabad while sixty Long-Term Observers (LTOs), reaching here in next few days for deployment across the country in early July.
“Following the arrival of long-term observers in their areas of observation, they will start meeting with election officials, candidates and representatives of civil society. They will report their observations back to the core team in Islamabad and these will contribute to the mission’s informed and impartial assessment of the electoral process,” Gahler explained.
Responding to a question, he expressed the hope that new election laws passed by the parliament would strengthen the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP). Responding to another question, he said that law and order in Pakistan is much better as compared to the election 2013.
Meanwhile, Caretaker Minister for Interior Muhammad Azam Khan on Thursday said that the international election observers would be provided fool-proof security during their stay in Pakistan.
Effective measures have been adopted to ensure free, fair and transparent elections, scheduled to be held on July 25, he said while talking to Michael Gahler, who called on the minister in Islamabad.