60 polling stations and all 10 Territorial Electoral Commissions have been observed by the ‘Independent Observer’ Public Alliance on the Municipal Council Election Day on 14 May in Yerevan. Additionally five mobile observation groups were monitoring the situation outside the polling stations to prevent and solve any possible problems during the election process.
The main problems identified by the 140 observers deployed included cases of voters filling out the ballot papers or enveloping them outside the voting booth, cases of several persons entering the voting booth simultaneously and cases of voters voicing out their votes after casting ballots. During the vote count the observers recorded the presence of people without any badges and police officers. In general the turnout of the election was very low.
Overall, 17 local NGOs and one international observation mission from the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Council of Europe conducted observations at different polling stations across Yerevan on election day. Although the Yerevan Municipal Elections are considered politically highly critical, the profile of election observations of the Yerevan Municipal Elections has been until recently rather low. Therefore the domestic observer organisations welcomed the support by Council of Europe as very timely and necessary.
The activity was supported by the “Long-term electoral assistance to the election related stakeholders of Armenia” project, which is a part of the Council of Europe/European Union Partnership for Good Governance.
Link to the preliminary findings of the ‘Independent Observer’ Public Alliance, a coalition of the two local organisations Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly-Vanadzor and Union of Informed Citizensare are available