EU to send 3 experts as observers


Ansar Bhatti

ISLAMABAD: The European Union, unlike past practice, is sending only three experts for monitoring the upcoming elections in Pakistan. A high-level EU diplomat told this scribe that this time the EU will not send a fully-fledged delegation as was the case in the past. Instead only three persons with expertise in the election monitoring shall come to Pakistan.

In 2002 elections, which were conducted under the supervision of the military dictator Pervez Musharraf, the EU had sent a high-powered observer mission headed by the Irish MP John Cushnahan.

That Observer had produced a 100-page report about the elections declaring the entire drill flawed and full of rigging. Initially, the EU praised the delegation for compiling a comprehensive report however after huge reaction from the Pakistani side and the US as well, because at that time the US was very much on Pakistan’s side, the EU had to distance itself from that report.

The observer missions that came afterwards produced favorable reports.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has invited observation missions for next year’s election. The EU Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) has monitored polls in the country five times.