OSCE monitors say Ukraine elections democratic

The head of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe mission that conducted the on-the-ground monitoring of Sunday's parliamentary elections in Ukraine claimed on Monday that the polls had met necessary democratic standards.

The head of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe mission that conducted the on-the-ground monitoring of Sunday's parliamentary elections in Ukraine claimed on Monday that the polls had met necessary democratic standards.

Kent Harstedt, who was speaking at a news conference in Kiev, also credited the Ukrainian government with having been able to organize voting practically throughout the country and praised the organization of vote counting.

He praised the Central Election Commission and said the elections marked a new step in democratic development in Ukraine.

The monitors said, however, that there had been offenses during the elections and that the new parliament would be expected to bring out changes to election law to prevent vote rigging and carry out other reforms.

Harstedt said there had been tense moments, and that the heads of some of the elections commission had been receiving threats.

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