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Websites employed to facilitate voter registration in Beijing

(Xinhua)

17:06, October 18, 2011

BEIJING, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- A variety of new channels, including websites, online discussion groups and instant messages, have been utilized to encourage residents in Beijing to register for electing community people's congress deputies, according to election authorities.

Various online communication tools have been adopted to enhance the accuracy and efficiency of the registration process, according to a Tuesday statement from the Standing Committee of the Beijing Municipal People's Congress.

Voters living in the city's Xicheng district now have the option of registering online to vote, as long as their online applications pass a verification process, which allows them to bypass the physical registration stations set up in the district.

Election organizers have been using online bulletin boards and instant messaging contact groups to get in touch with relocated households and encourage them to register.

The online tools have not only allowed authorities to establish mutual communication channels between voters and election organizers, but also fostered communication among voters themselves, the statement said.

The adoption of online communication platforms is meant to generate a positive social environment and encourage orderly political participation, the statement said.

Elections for new deputies to the People's Congress at the district, county and township levels are scheduled to take place on Nov. 8.

Most of the constituencies completed their registration and posted public notices by Tuesday, 20 days ahead of the election date as requested by law, the statement said.

Across the country, the elections for lawmakers at the county and township levels started on May 7, which granted, for the first time, equal representation in legislative bodies to rural and urban citizens under last year's newly amended Electoral Law.

More than two million lawmakers at the county and township levels will be elected during nationwide elections, held every five years, in more than 2,000 counties and 30,000 townships, according to the National People's Congress.

However, no specific provisions have been created to address the voting rights of China's migrant population.

Beijing has promised to grant voting rights to those who can provide valid documents from the election authorities of the regions in which they were originally registered.

Beijing has more than seven million migrants.

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