The European Parliament (EP) calls for an independent international investigation by respected international legal experts and institutions into the parliamentary, provincial and local elections’ irregularities, with special attention to the City of Belgrade Assembly elections, reads the European Parliament draft resolution on the Serbian election results.
The draft is a working document that EP political groups will discuss on Wednesday in order to produce a joint resolution text.
The draft resolution condemns the attacks by government officials, notably by Prime Minister Ana Brnabic and President Aleksandar Vucic, on elections observers, including Members of the European Parliament, and calls for a return to respectful and constructive discourse.
It says that the European Parliament is deeply concerned about the attempts to discredit and intimidate the observers and urges Serbian authorities to take all necessary steps to avoid any further disinformation campaigns against election observers and to establish conditions that allow national and international election observers to effectively do their work, to protect them from any violence, threats, retaliation, adverse discrimination and pressure.
The working document reads that the European Parliament deplores that the Serbian parliamentary and local election held on 17 December 2023 “deviated from international standards and Serbian commitments to free and fair elections” due to the incumbents’ persistent and systematic abuse of institutions and media to gain an unfair and undue advantage. It considers that these elections cannot be deemed free and fair and said it is alarmed by the widespread and systematic scale of fraud that compromised the integrity of the elections in Serbia.
It states that the election day was smoothly conducted, but marked by numerous procedural deficiencies, including inconsistent application of safeguards during voting and counting, frequent instances of overcrowding, breaches in secrecy of the vote, and numerous instances of group voting. The European Parliament expresses its serious concern over those irregularities and the overall election environment, which fell far below the expected standards for a European Union (EU) candidate country.
The Serbian authorities are reminded that the proper functioning of Serbia’s democratic institutions is at the core of Serbia’s EU accession process and EU accession methodology.
The European Parliament notes with serious concern ample evidence collected by the international and domestic observers showing illegal activities leading up to and during Election Day that altered the election outcome, critically impacted in particularly the results of the Belgrade city elections and seriously undermined the legitimacy of the parliamentary elections.
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