Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Moldovan Officials Detain, Expel Election Observers

Posted by Info on 29/07/2009

Moldovans go to the polls on July 29, in a repeat of the disputed parliamentary elections.

Moldova holds its second parliamentary election this year. Back in April, riots flooded the street of Moldovan capital after the Communist party’s victory, amid claims the ballot had been rigged.

International election observers traveling to Moldova have been detained and others expelled, RFE/RL’s Ukrainian and Moldovan services report. Georgians were denied entry due to “information from Moldova’s intelligence service.”. An ENEMO representative in Chisinau, Sergei Tkachenko, also  said the Georgians did not have accreditation when they arrived in Moldova, but were supposed to receive it once they reached downtown Chisinau. Georgian citizens do not need visas to enter Moldova. Moldova expelled several activists and foreign journalists during its April 5 poll, which was followed by street violence and the death of at least one protester.

Moldovans abroad feel left out as country decides. According to official figures, some 500,000 Moldovans currently live abroad. Other estimates put their number at 1 million, almost a quarter of the country’s total population.

Moldovan expatriates are the engine of their homeland economy — the remittances they send home are equal to about one-third of Moldova’s gross domestic product. The majority of Moldovans abroad won’t be able to cast ballots in the decisive general election on July 29. Many Moldovan expatriates live in places with no Moldovan consular representation and therefore no polling stations.   Many Moldovans also live abroad illegally and are therefore unable to vote.

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