Monday, May 02, 2005

319 Foreign Observers to Monitor Ethiopia's National Elections

A total of 319 foreign observers will be deployed to various parts of Ethiopia to observe the upcoming May 15 national elections, the state-appointed National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) said Monday.

NEBE Chairman Kemal Bedri told journalists that the observers are drawn from the African Union (AU), the European Union (EU), the Arab League, the US-based Carter Center and embassies of other countries.

The chairman said diplomatic missions in Addis Ababa, including the American, Japanese, Chinese, Indian and Turkish embassies to Ethiopia, have requested the board to allow them to assign their own election observers in the forthcoming national elections.

According to the chairman, only three local religious institutions have so far been allowed to assign their election observers. Non-governmental organizations and civil societies would not be allowed to assign their observers.


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