NEWS AND EVENTS
December 20, 2004
UZBEKISTAN ELECTIONS SHOULD BE FREE, TRANSPARENT, US SAYS
The United States expressed its hope and expectation that the 26 December parliamentary elections in Uzbekistan will be free, fair and transparent, consistent with international democratic standards, a US diplomat said.
Paul Jones, US diplomat, said: ?The United States takes this opportunity to express its hope and expectation that these elections will be conducted in a free and transparent manner, consistent with OSCE commitments and with international democratic standards.?
?We also note with regret that no truly independent opposition candidates will be taking part in these elections, a development unfortunately calling into question whether the elections will be truly competitive,? he said.
?But the United States is pleased that there are a number of OSCE/ODIHR [Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights] long-term election observers currently on the ground in Uzbekistan and that they will be assessing the pre-election process,? Jones said.
He added: ?We hope that they will be able to conduct their activities without interference and in accordance with Uzbekistan\'s OSCE commitments. The United States looks forward to ODIHR?s subsequent report.?