Lise Christoffersen (Norway, SOC), PACE rapporteur for post-monitoring dialogue with North Macedonia, has welcomed the agreement on the date of early parliamentary elections, to be held on 15 July 2020. “We commend the political parties - from the majority and the opposition - for reaching an agreement on a date which will allow elections to be inclusive, thus demonstrating their ability to build consensus despite their divergences. This result was achieved through concerted efforts undertaken by all stakeholders, including the President of the Republic who facilitated the political dialogue.”
“This decision reflects the determination of all the political players to resume election activities and democratic processes which were abruptly halted by the outbreak of COVID-19. Nevertheless, the organisation of these elections will remain a challenge in this period of pandemic; we hope that all sides will support the authorities in their efforts to ensure that the conduct of the campaign and the elections comply both with democratic standards and sanitary requirements. The aim should be to guarantee the smooth preparation of fair elections while protecting the health of all voters and election officials. The eight-day state of emergency declared yesterday by the President of the Republic should serve this purpose,” Ms Christoffersen concluded.
The Monitoring Committee will hold a hearing by video-conference on 22 June 2020, in camera, on Membership obligations and the conduct of democratic elections in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, when it will be informed about the situation in North Macedonia.