European Union Election Observation Mission
El Salvador 2019

About the EOM mission to El Salvador, 2019

18/12/2018 - 11:43
About us - structure and organisation

Following the invitation by the Salvadorean authorities, the European Union has deployed an Election Observation Mission (EOM) to El Salvador to observe the legislative and municipal elections, due to take place on 3 February with a possible second round on 10 March.

Our mandate

The EU EOM will assess the general elections according to El Salvador’s national law and the international commitments it has made regarding elections.


The EU EOM does not interfere in any way in the electoral process. It provides an informed, comprehensive and impartial analysis of the entire electoral process in line with established EU methodology.


The EU EOM operates in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, adopted at the United Nations in 2005 by a number of international bodies involved in election observation.


Consistent methodology

The EU EOM applies an established methodology for observing elections. EU EOMs do not offer advice and assistance or in any way interfere in the electoral process. The EU EOM does not legitimise the electoral process nor validate the election results. It has a mandate to observe, collect and analyze information concerning the election process and to ensure that all findings and conclusions are based on carefully verified factual information.


On election day, the Mission to El Salvador will have approximately 80 observers from EU Member States and Norway. Each team visits a number of different polling stations. To ensure the consistency of election day observation, EU observer teams use standard reporting forms.


The main objectives of election observation are to:


  • Make recommendations to help improve future electoral processes;
  • Support the democratic process in partner countries;
  • Strengthen respect for human rights and the rule of law.


The methodology is based on long-term observation, through which the EU EOM’s experts analyse all aspects of the electoral process, including:


  • the legal framework and its implementation;
  • the political context;
  • the performance of the election administration;
  • the role of state and other institutions;
  • voter registration;
  • campaign activities;
  • the overall environment of the elections, including respect for fundamental freedoms, civil and political rights;
  • access to and conduct of the media;
  • the role of civil society;
  • the voting, counting and transmission of results;
  • the complaints or appeals process;
  • the announcement of the results.


Observers throughout El Salvador

A core team of election experts and specialists was deployed to San Salvador at the end of December, to follow and analyse the election process.


Deputy Chief of Mission – Alexander Gray (Ireland)

Electoral Analyst – Manuel Sánchez de Nogués (Spain)

Legal Analyst – Cristina Ramos Alves (Portugal)

Political Analyst – Andreas Jordan (Austria)

Media Analyst – Javier Gutiérrez (Spain)

Press Officer – Alessandro Gori (Italy)

Observer coordinator – Norma de la Cruz (United Kingdom)

Election Technologies Analyst – Marcela Mašková (Czech Republic)

Data Analyst – Peter Michalik (Slovakia)


At the beginning of January, the EU EOM deployed 28 long-term observers (LTO) to 14 departments of El Salvador.


Shortly before election day, the Mission will be reinforced by 28 short-term observers (STO), to observe activities at the polling stations.


LTOs and STOs will also be joined by diplomats from EU Member States resident in El Salvador.


Independent assessment

The EU EOM’s assessment of the electoral process is independent of any EU institution and member state. Its purpose is to offer a comprehensive and impartial assessment of the electoral process and its compliance with El Salvador’s national law and international commitments.


EU observers adhere to a Code of Conduct, which obliges them to maintain strict impartiality and neutrality, and to abide by Salvadorean law.


Findings of the Mission

A preliminary statement on the findings of the Mission is issued shortly after election day(s). This statement, presented by the Chief Observer at a press conference in San Salvador, outlines the EU EOM’s initial assessment prior to the completion of the electoral process.


Approximately two months after the elections, the Mission will present a comprehensive final report with recommendations for improving future elections.


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