Russia, the 2018 elections: we see

Let’s start with the obvious. At the finish of the Russian presidential campaign, the international interest it has acquired a stable character. Moreover, in different approaches.

photo: Natalia Muslinkina

For nihilistic presented, in particular, Russophobic Fronde, neocons, a significant part of Western intelligence agencies, anti-Russian appeals to the undermining of electoral processes, early “writing” in their argument of the illegitimacy (one last insistent instructions of the US state Department to its sarandipity on this account are worth), this “interest” is causing non-constructive actions (e.g., obvious deception of public opinion, attempts to interfere in the internal Affairs of Russia).

For positive, the main principles of reality, law and justice, the obvious status of Russia as a state with an effective sovereignty, the electoral potential, which acts in the space of international law and universally accepted election standards (laid down, in particular the UN, OSCE, CIS).

For representatives of this group (represented by nation-States and intergovernmental institutions – the majority of international actors, UN-skilled) a legitimate and meaningful outcome of the vote on 18 March 2018 – not only to the evolution of government institutions of Russia in its reform as a democratic and legal education, the strengthening of humanitarian, socio-economic, political, technological security of the country. They have, cannot have, because the Russian Federation’s status as an international personality global factor of world order, and the outward manifestation.

Such projection involves the creation of an atmosphere of cooperation and partnership, trust and psychological compatibility of the conduct of States; promote the development of electoral diplomacy and the international legal order; aging in this new, including legally-binding, international standards for elections. This range of successful outcomes goes on and on. But the main thing today is to look at the real facts and examples, international dimensions of elections of the President of the Russian Federation. On them focused the attention of such significant operational contingent of international observers.

Of the Russian Federation in full accordance with their political and legal obligations, the principles of democracy and the rule of law actively applies in Federal campaigns, the institution of international observation. Was no exception and the campaign, taking place in our days. Preliminary results of such an observer, we will sum 19 March 2018, but today there is reason to analyse in a positive way.

As of 6 March, the CEC accredited according to the law 1018 observers from 100 countries. Recall that in 2016 (elections to the State Duma of the seventh convocation) the final number was 774 people. According to forecasts, the number of international observers in the coming days will continue to increase. The reasons to exist. Only according to RZA (Russian foreign) about 400 people – foreigners would like to participate in the process in the election campaign – 18. The State Duma of Russia the invitation has received more than 250 participants from 74 foreign countries. Actively working in this direction and the Federation Council. The appropriate authority effectively implementing the Central election Commission of the Russian Federation.

If we talk about today, it is among the leading countries that have passed the official procedure of Kazakhstan (109) Belarus (86), Germany (80), USA (54), Poland (45), Kyrgyzstan (43), Armenia (31), France (30) Sweden (22). Completing the top – 10 in Denmark and the Czech Republic (20). Note that 782 people representing 12 international organizations. Leading positions traditionally occupied mission: OSCE/ODIHR (468), OSCE PA (116), the Executive Committee of the CIS (250), the Parliamentary Assembly of Belarus-Russia (26), SCO (25), CIS (40). Their authoritative representatives highlighted the CSTO PA, inter-parliamentary Academy of Orthodoxy, the world Association of electoral commissions, the Arab Association of electoral bodies, the Organization of American States, the League of Arab States, the PA BSEC (4).

Currently, 96 long-term observers began to fulfill the tasks of their missions in 52 constituent entities of the Russian Federation. In their work they present some peculiarities. Let us mention some: a) a tight focus on the Moscow (30 people) and St. Petersburg (5 persons); b) among the missionaries, the overwhelming majority of citizens of Western countries (EU, NATO); post-Soviet world represented Armenia (4); Azerbaijan (4); Kazakhstan (1); Kyrgyzstan (1); Belarus (6); Moldova (1); Georgia (1); C) the United States is actively working in pairs, observers from Norway (Krasnodar Krai), Germany (Krasnoyarsk region, Samara region), Sweden (Omsk oblast), Lithuania (Orenburg and Ryazan oblast), Russia (Saratov oblast), Poland (Yaroslavl region). Germany was in group with US (Krasnodar Krai, Samara oblast), Kazakhstan (Altai region), Czech Republic (Perm Krai), Denmark (Astrakhan oblast), Sweden (Vologda oblast), Poland (Voronezh oblast), Italy (Rostov oblast), the UK (Tyumen oblast), Finland (Chelyabinsk oblast). France, together with Lithuania (Khabarovsk territory), Armenia (Nizhny Novgorod oblast), Norway (Tomsk oblast). Poland works in cooperation with Denmark (Republic of Tatarstan), Germany (Voronezh oblast), USA (Yaroslavl region). Armenia (Republic of Karelia), Russia (Irkutsk oblast), Ireland (Lipetsk region), France (Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov oblast). Azerbaijan has its own area (Vladimir, Moscow oblast, St. Petersburg). Kazakhstan cooperates with Germany (Altai Krai). There are other geographical, cultural and logistical circumstances. They will fully emerge in the near future, when the international observation mission will join kratkosrochnye. It is already known that 81 the mission of international observation in this format are ready for action. They are attended by representatives of OSCE, SCO, CIS Interparliamentary Assembly, the National Assembly, the Senate of the Parliament of Tajikistan, Senate of Kazakhstan, other national and international agencies.

Speaking on international monitoring in the current election should be as positive trends to highlight the fact of increased attention to the voting at polling stations outside the territory of the Russian Federation. Today at the request of the Ministry of foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation the Central election Commission has approved a list of 145 foreign countries, which was founded 400 precinct election commissions (usually at Embassies and Consulates of the Russian Federation). In 94 countries in accordance with the regulatory criteria will be early voting (in some of them it started on March 2-3, 2018). According to available information, national and international observers are planning to present during the voting on PECs in Germany, USA, Israel, Belgium, the UK, Latvia, Moldova, and other regions. So, the IPA CIS has already determined their short-term observers during the vote in the PEC on the territory of the Russian Federation Embassies in Baku (4pers.), Yerevan (3 people), Minsk (1 pers.), Bishkek (3 people), Chisinau (4 persons). International interest in the election of the President of the Russian Federation shown in foreign media. Election issues becoming a major priority in the work of the majority of the 700 journalists accredited with the Russian foreign Ministry.

In addition, a recently enhanced stream (about 200 persons), wishing to obtain the foreign Ministry accreditation to cover, among other issues, and the election campaign in Russia. Distinguished journalists from USA, Japan, EU countries. When they meet the criteria to get the visa and other (organizational) support.

You can give other positive examples that say about the business and the substantial interest of stakeholders in the international community to the election campaign in 2018 in Russia. We can count on objective and qualitative approach to the evaluation of Elections of the head of the Russian state from the national-sovereign entities and international organizations. In this discourse the prospect of the development of international law, strengthening of inter-state space of electoral cooperation and collaboration.

V. N. Likhachev, member of the Central election Commission of the Russian Federation, Ambassador extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, doctor of legal Sciences, Professor, member of the world Association of international law.

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