A parliamentary conference on the “Implementation of the right to free elections in Eastern Partnership countries”, organised by PACE in Paris on 4-5 June, in co-operation with the French National Assembly and the Venice Commission, will address the challenge of applying election legislation and Council of Europe standards.This conference forms part of, and is supported by, the EU-CoE Programmatic Co-operation Framework in the Eastern Partnership countries.
Some 80 participants, members of parliament of the six countries that belong to the Eastern Partnership (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Ukraine, Republic of Moldova and Belarus), members of the Parliamentary Assembly from other Council of Europe member states, representatives of election administrations, non-governmental organisations, experts from the Venice Commission and other Council of Europe bodies, as well as representatives of other international organisations, will share their experiences and best practice with regard to the application of election legislation and Council of Europe standards.
The conference will be opened by Harlem Desir, Secretary of State for European Affairs for France, René Rouquet, Vice-President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and Chairperson of the French Delegation to PACE, Jean-Claude Frécon, Chairperson of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, Gianni Buquicchio, President of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe and Michael Georg Link, Director of the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (ODIHR/OSCE).
Other speakers include Jean-Charles Gardetto, former PACE member and Rapporteur on “Ensuring greater democracy in elections”, Giancarlo Defazio of the Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers of the European Commission, Tamar Zhvania, Chairperson of the Central Election Commission of Georgia, and Nicolas Kaczorowski, Country Director in Tunisia of the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), who will act as conference rapporteur.
Topics to be discussed include the use of administrative resources in election campaigns, the accuracy of voter lists and the functioning of electoral administrations.
The conference is organised by PACE’s Parliamentary Projects Support Division and the Venice Commission together with PACE's Election Observation and Interparliamentary Co-operation Divisions.