21 Nov 2019 20:55

Moscow hails Belarusian parliamentary elections as success, slams OSCE ODIHR "unobjective" assessment

MOSCOW. Nov 21 (Interfax) - The Russian side has welcomed the successful parliamentary elections held in Belarus and noted their "politicized and unobjective" assessment by a monitoring mission led by the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE ODIHR).

The elections were monitored by over a thousand of international representatives, including 350 from Russia, many of them as part of missions sent by various international organizations, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated on its website on Thursday.

"Observers from the CIS, SCO [Shanghai Cooperation Organization], the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union of Belarus and Russia, have recognized that the elections were held openly and at the high international level, in accordance with the national laws and international standards," the ministry said.

"By contrast, the OSCE ODIHR joint mission involving Council of Europe and OSCE parliamentarians claimed that the election campaign did not conform to international standards for democratic elections and demonstrated total disregard for the freedom of assembly, association and expression.

"The Russian side welcomes the parliamentary elections held in Belarus successfully, with full respect for international democratic standards. We consider the ODIHR mission assessments to be unobjective and politicized," the ministry said.

It also expressed its regret over "the U.S. and EU countries showing solidarity for them."

"[Russia] is hoping for efficient work with the new Belarusian parliament, not least in the framework of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union of Belarus and Russia," the ministry said.