parliamentary elections

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Morocco: Activists call for election boycott | HeraldOnline

Thousands of pro-democracy activists demonstrated in Morocco’s largest city calling for a boycott of parliamentary elections less than two weeks away. The demonstrations comes as a parliamentary delegation from the Council of Europe noted there was little enthusiasm in the country just two weeks before the election and said there was worry about the level of participation.

“I’m boycotting, how about you?” said stickers carried by many of the activists as they marched through a working class district in Casablanca. Morocco’s parliamentary elections will be held early as part of a government-initiated reform process in the North African kingdom, which is a close U.S. ally.

Full Article: CASABLANCA, Morocco | Moroccan activists call for election boycott | The Herald - Rock Hill, SC.

Croatia: OSCE/ODIHR begins observation of parliamentary elections in Croatia | osce.org

The OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) today opened a limited observation mission to monitor the 4 December parliamentary elections in Croatia.

ODIHR was invited by Croatia’s government to observe the elections, in line with the country’s commitments as a participating State of the OSCE. The mission is headed by Ambassador Geert-Hinrich Ahrens and consists of  ten international experts based in Zagreb and six long-term observers to be deployed to the country’s regions.

The mission will assess these elections for compliance with OSCE commitments and other international standards for democratic elections, as well as national legislation. Observers will follow campaign activities, the work of the election administration and relevant state bodies, implementation of the legislative framework, and the resolution of election disputes.

Egypt: The Effects of Egypt’s Election Law | The Middle East Channel

Egyptians have finally begun to learn the rules that will govern their first post-revolutionary parliamentary elections, scheduled to begin on November 28. The election law announced by the Supreme Council for the Armed Forces (SCAF) is remarkably complicated, generating great confusion both inside and outside of Egypt. Those poorly understood rules will play an important role in shaping the results — and are already pushing the Egyptian party scene into a polarized competition between Islamist and secular blocs, with independents somewhere in the middle with no clear political or economic agenda.

The electoral system that the SCAF has chosen for the forthcoming election is a departure from Egypt’s historical practice. Egyptian elections have typically been governed by a majoritarian system in smaller constituencies (222 in total). Such a system traditionally made voting a choice between individual candidates rather than parties’ programs, which put a premium on coming from a strong local tribe or from a wealthy background. The small size of constituencies made this possible because it increased the electoral weight of extended families and tribes, especially in rural constituencies.

Full Article: The Effects of Egypt's Election Law - By Mazen Hassan | The Middle East Channel.

Kazakhstan: Senate elections under way in Kazakhstan | Eng.Gazeta.kz

The Senate elections will take place in Kazakhstan today. Election of senators will start at 10:00 am Astana time (in some regions – at 11:00). By this time all over the country about 3 thousand deputies of maslikhats of different levels will gather at polling stations to elect 16 members to the upper house of Parliament.

The Central Election Commission registered 39 Senate candidates, including 14 nominated by local representative bodies (maslikhats) and 25 self-nominated ones. According to the CEC, the average age of candidates is 54 years, while the youngest is Erlan Bazekenov, self-nominated from the Aktobe region, born in 1981, and the oldest – Erbolat Sadvakassov, self-nominated from Almaty, born in 1945.

Full Article: Eng.Gazeta.kz - Senate elections under way in Kazakhstan.