E.u. Chooses Swede to Head Palestinian Elections’ Monitors

The 15 foreign ministers of the European Union this week chose former Swedish justice and trade minister Carl Lidbom to head a team of international observers to monitor the upcoming Palestinian elections.

Israel and the Palestinian Authority asked the European Union in May to coordinate the team of 600 observers that will monitor Palestinian elections.

The timing of the elections is dependent on when Israel and the Palestinian Authority conclude their ongoing negotiations for extending Palestinian self- rule in the West Bank. Currently, the elections are expected to be held in October or November.

The European Union had agreed to provide half of the 600 international observers. Other observers are expected to come from the United States, Russia, Egypt, Jordan, Japan and Norway.

The observers, who will begin their work three months before the elections are held, will help draw up candidate lists, establish an election commission and monitor polling. After the voting, they will produce a report on how the elections were conducted.

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