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Kyiv, Ukraine — The parliament of Ukraine adopted a law providing for open, transparent, and democratic parliamentary elections on October 28th, 2012. The parliament ruled to equip most polling stations with web-cameras, broadcasting the signal from the stations online.
The installation of the web-cameras at the voting stations enables anyone with internet access to watch elections in Ukraine in real time. According to the Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov, 34,000 voting stations will be equipped with cameras. Each voting station will be equipped with at least two cameras.
According to the new law, the cameras should be placed in a way that does not interfere with the secret ballot system and the freedom of voting, while ensuring the procedures of voting and vote count are abided. “We will have to provide the whole country with satellite communication in order to run these web-cameras,” said the leader of the Party of Regions Olexandr Yefremov.
Meanwhile, during a meeting with a delegation of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly Azarov said that Ukraine welcomed foreign observers from the CIS, the EU, the OSCE, et cetera at the autumn elections. He invited everyone who wanted to come, saying that since Ukraine hosted two million visitors during EURO 2012 it was sure ready to receive 34,000 observers. The Vice President of the OSCE Wolfgang Grossruck already accepted the invitation of the Prime Minister.
In efforts to hold free and fair elections, the Ukrainian parliament passed a new election law on November 17, 2011. It reintroduced the mixed electoral system in Ukraine. According to the new system, 225 members of the Ukrainian parliament will be elected through party lists and 225 MPs – through single-member districts.
The new law also set the election threshold of five percent, banned blocks of political parties to participate in elections, as well as excluded the previously available option of not supporting any party or candidate on the list by ticking the respective box.