by GH Eliason in Novorussia for The Saker Blog
For the November 11th election, I was asked to be a part of the International Election observer team Lugansk People’s Republic. It was an experience I won’t forget. Representatives from over 20 countries participated. Political views were represented across the spectrum from conservative to liberal to socialist to progressive.
Although some of us were a little suspicious of others political views, what became clear quickly was everyone was committed to the democratic process.
As I got to know the some of the observers, it became clear we were all committed to making sure Lugansk had interference and corruption free elections. It’s important to me that Lugansk Republic people have a future and they get to decide it.
When everything was said and done, it can be said without a doubt the government officials in Lugansk were as committed as we were to upholding those same ideals. They proved to be transparent and helpful throughout the preparation, transport, and making sure we could do the job they needed us to do.
While we were there for the elections, they wanted to make it clear to all the international observers why they needed to have elections in the first place. These issues are very real and in the civil war Ukraine is pressing, democratic elections is the one thing both Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republics can do to ensure the survival of their people and the viability of their countries and economies in the future.
Making sure the election is up to international standards was the priority we all shared. We knew this election was going to get more scrutiny than 2016 Clinton-Trump.
With that in mind we checked everything from the locks on the ballot boxes to the number of ballots that could be put in at one time. Unlike some western countries, passports are checked against registered voter lists so proof of their legitimate right to vote is verified every time.
I spoke with one of the International observers that participated before and he said this time was an improvement because even the locks matched and it could not be mistaken for tampering.
Why is this election lawful?
If you live in a society with a constitution there is a general principle that governments adhere to.