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In response to an invitation by the Union Election Commission (UEC), the European Union has deployed an Election Observation Mission (EOM) to Myanmar to observe the general elections scheduled for 8 November 2015. This is the first time that the European Union is observing elections in Myanmar. The Mission underscores the EU's support for Myanmar's democratic transition and its commitment to supporting credible, transparent and inclusive elections in the country.
Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission (HRVP), appointed Alexander Graf Lambsdorff, a Vice President of the European Parliament, as Chief Observer.
The High Representative stated: "The deployment of this Election Observation Mission confirms the European Union's continued commitment to the democratic transition of Myanmar. Elections held in a peaceful and inclusive environment will help to consolidate irreversible reforms in the country."
The Chief Observer, Alexander Graf Lambsdorff, said: "I am honoured to lead the first EU EOM to Myanmar. The forthcoming general elections will be a key opportunity to further consolidate democracy in the country."
Following the decision of the HRVP, a comprehensive Memorandum of Understanding was signed with the UEC, agreeing on the presence of EU observers during all stages of the electoral process, including advance voting, in all states and regions of the country. The EOM Core Team of 9 EU election analysts arrived in Myanmar from 26 September and will stay in the country until the completion of the election process. They will be joined by 30 long-term observers on 7 October and 62 short-term observers on 2 November to be deployed across the country. A delegation of the European Parliament and Myanmar-based diplomats from EU Member States will reinforce the mission on election day.
The EOM is an independent mission which will neither interfere in any way in the election process, nor validate the election results. The EOM will issue a Preliminary Statement 48 hours after election day and a Final Report comprising a number of recommendations at a later stage.