EU Statement on the Parliamentary Elections in Kyrgyzstan

OSCE Permanent Council No. 1352, Vienna, 27 January 2022.

1. The European Union thanks the Kyrgyz Delegation for raising the Parliamentary elections that took place on 28 November 2021. We welcome their organisation, since the previous ones that took place on 4 October 2020 had been annulled. According to the findings by the international election observers from the OSCE/ODIHR, the OSCE PA, and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), the elections were orderly and competitive, and fundamental freedoms and transparency were generally respected.

2. The European Union supports the preliminary findings and conclusions of the International Election Observation Mission (IEOM). The Mission concluded that extensive amendments to the legal framework shortly before elections had a negative effect on meaningful voter engagement. Despite the fact that the process was peaceful and well-administered, ODIHR highlights shortcomings, such as vote buying and violations of campaigning procedures. Problems were also observed during the vote count and the initial stages of tabulation.

3. We take note of the progress in conducting this vote, compared to the October 2020 elections. However, the ODIHR EOM pointed out in its Preliminary Conclusions that previous ODIHR and Venice Commission recommendations had not been included in the reforms and in some instances, the amendments undertaken ahead of the elections had departed further from prior recommendations. The recommendations issued by ODIHR regarding this election, as well as the ones issued previously by ODIHR and the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission on the election legislation, should be addressed by the national authorities. In this regard, a fair representation of women in the new Parliament should also be ensured. This could also benefit voter confidence.

4. The European Union encourages the authorities of the Kyrgyz Republic to continue its cooperation with ODIHR to implement these recommendations and to stay in close dialogue in this regard. As a longstanding partner of the Kyrgyz Republic, the EU remains committed to supporting the new Parliament in promoting the country's social and economic development, good governance and the rule of law.

The Candidate Countries REPUBLIC of NORTH MACEDONIA*, MONTENEGRO*, SERBIA* and ALBANIA*, the Country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and Potential Candidate BOSNIA and HERZEGOVINA, and the EFTA countries ICELAND, LIECHTENSTEIN and NORWAY, members of the European Economic Area, as well as UKRAINE align themselves with this statement.

* Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.