UWC International Election Observation Mission presents Final Report on the 2019 Presidential Election in Ukraine
On 15 July 2019, the Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) International Election Observation Mission presented its Final Report during a press conference held at the Ukraine Crisis Media Centre in Kyiv, Ukraine, confirming that the 2019 Presidential Election in Ukraine, held on 31 March 2019 and 21 April 2019, was conducted in line with international standards for democratic elections.
The UWC Mission, which numbered 249 observers from 33 countries, offered a number of recommendations in its comprehensive Final Report to improve the electoral process in the future.
Drawing on the findings of its short-term observers, the UWC Mission recommends: (1) providing for an earlier debate between candidates; (2) abolishing the “day of silence”; (3) ensuring equal access of candidates to mass media; (4) reducing the timeframe for the establishment of the election results and their contestation period; and (5) exploring voting by mail, electronic voting and increasing the number of polling stations in foreign constituencies in order to enhance electoral participation by citizens of Ukraine residing abroad.
Following the results of its long-term media monitoring, the UWC Mission calls on the governing authorities of Ukraine and civil society to: (1) continue raising awareness of the serious threats that disinformation poses for political stability, socio-economic wellbeing and fundamental freedoms; (2) conceive a strategic program for combating disinformation, which is an important element of the Russian Federation’s hybrid aggression against Ukraine; (3) set up a commission, which will coordinate the various stakeholders involved in the process of preventing, detecting, analyzing and combating disinformation and its side effects; (4) create a monitoring group consisting of diaspora representatives, who will continue on a permanent basis the monitoring of traditional and social media in their countries of residence for manipulation and disinformation about Ukraine generally and its democratic processes in particular; (5) establish channels of cooperation with governments of Western countries and international organizations to share experiences and data so as to effectively counter Russian disinformation and to coordinate the struggle against this destructive phenomenon at the global level; (6) identify effective ways of engaging Google, YouTube, social media such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and the communication platform WhatsApp, in developing the means to counteract the spread of Russian and other disinformation; (7) invest in increasing media awareness among Ukrainian citizens, including the issues of disinformation and manipulation through specialized trainings and the inclusion of critical thinking and media literacy courses in school and academic curricula; and (8) facilitate the development of independent and high-quality media, which would effectively disseminate accurate information about Ukraine to different target audiences and in different languages.
“The UWC Mission calls on the international community to continue supporting the democratic consolidation of Ukraine in the face of the ongoing brutal Russian hybrid aggression,” – stated Head of the UWC Mission Eugene Czolij.
The Final Report of the UWC Mission can be read HERE.
The press conference regarding this Final Report can be viewed HERE.