ODIHR Director: Full support of election process in line with international standards

NEWS 15.04.202414:00

The OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) is highlighting the importance of a genuine and result-oriented dialogue on all key aspects of the election process among stakeholders, supported by citizen observers, to increase transparency and trust in the run-up to the local elections in Belgrade, ODIHR Director Matteo Mecacci said ahead of a two-day visit to Serbia this week.

“While the post-election environment in Serbia has been tense and we have heard much harsh rhetoric, over the last weeks I have also seen the focus shifting to the importance of making sure that key recommendations made by ODIHR at the end of February are fully implemented, which is welcomed,” Mecacci said in an op-ed forwarded to the Beta news agency.

During his forthcoming visit to Belgrade Mecacci will hold meetings with the authorities, political parties, and civil society to express ODIHR’s support for work on improving the election process but also to hear their concerns.

ODIHR has observed elections in Serbia 17 times, most recently in December 2023, said Mecacci, adding that the assessment is always based on a comprehensive analysis of all key aspects of the election process by ODIHR experts and hundreds of long- and short-term observers.

“Progress is now possible in Serbia as solutions are within reach even in areas such as ensuring better transparency around voter lists, or improving the independence and oversight of the media, as well as others,” said Mecacci.