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Togo, EU sign agreement on observation of legislative elections
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11:00, August 04, 2007

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Togo and the European Union (EU) have signed here Friday an agreement on observation conditions and criteria to be used by European observers during the forthcoming legislative elections in the country.

The agreement was signed by Togolese foreign minister Zarifou Ayeva, and the EU representative in Togo, Joao Mello de Sampaio.

By signing the agreement, Togo has thereby confirmed its adherence to international standards which govern election observation missions, and which must be applied in all future legislatives elections in the country.

According to the terms of the agreement, Togo officially invites an EU observer-mission and guarantees it a conducive working environment, such as free movement, observation, analysis and expression.

EU observers are expected to arrive in Togo on Aug. 16 and will be deployed across the entire territory. They will observe the whole electoral process, offer advice, submit opinion reports and formulate recommendations for future elections.

For the EU representative in Togo, the signing of the agreement proves Togolese authorities' willingness to organize free, democratic, transparent elections acceptable to all citizens. He also underscored EU's commitment to assist Togo in its democratization process.

On his part, the foreign minister reaffirmed president Faure Gnassingbe's and his government's determination of "ensuring the polls are held in a peaceful, fair and transparent atmosphere."

Source: Xinhua

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