Vol. 5 Num 931 Thu. January 11, 2007  
Front Page

NDI, IRI won't watch Jan 22 elections

US-based election watchdogs National Democratic Institute (NDI) and International Republican Institute (IRI) yesterday suspended plans to send their delegations for the January 22 parliamentary elections as all of the major parties are not participating in it.

"The NDI and IRI have concluded that an international observer mission would be unable to make a positive contribution to the process because all of the major parties are not participating in the elections," they said in a joint statement.

The statement said the IRI and NDI are also concerned about the impact the current political environment might have on the ability of international observers to safely and effectively observe the elections.

Earlier on January 6, the European Union also said its Election Observation Mission for the upcoming general elections in Bangladesh may not proceed as expected if the political stakeholders fail to resolve the ongoing crisis.

"A failure of the current electoral process would be a major setback for democracy in Bangladesh and for the international credibility of the country," the EU stated in a release of the local EU presidency.