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The EU has taken note of the preliminary findings of the International Election Observation Mission at the recent parliamentary elections in Armenia. The EU is pleased to see that a large number of international and domestic observers, including observers of the OSCE and the Council of Europe, have monitored the elections.

Although some progress has been made since the last presidential elections on March 5, 2003, especially regarding the technical preparations, the pre-election campaign and the media coverage of the pre-electoral campaign, the EU regrets that the overall election process did not meet the international standards in a number of key aspects, whereas the Armenian authorities promised substantive improvements after the Presidential elections of February 19, 2003.

The EU is especially concerned with the reoccurrence of falsification of vote counts, the unbalanced representation in the election commissions, the intimidation of proxies and the lack of transparency in the publishing of the election results.

The EU stresses its readiness to assist the Armenian authorities in re-addressing these shortcomings in the future in cooperation with other relevant international institutions such as the OSCE and the Council of Europe.

The Acceding Countries Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, the Slovak Republic and Slovenia, the Associated Countries Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area align themselves with this declaration.

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