UK ambassador to Egypt presses international election monitoring

UK’s ambassador in Cairo Dominique Asquith on Wednesday said despite Egypt’s rejection of international oversight in upcoming parliamentary elections, several embassies will monitor the process.

Asquith stressed international observation ensures transparency and does not violate state sovereignty.

“Many democratic states allow foreign overseers to monitor their polls,” said Asquith, who also noted that the last British elections were conducted under international supervision.

”In different parliaments around the world, various political parties have their representation," Asquith said in response to questioning about Egyptian democracy. "But here in Egypt, the ruling party enjoys parliamentary majority, which reflects the absence of an active role by rival parties, and that’s why i find no answer for that question.”

”The overall representation of political parties in a country’s parliament mirrors its status," he continued.

But Asquith said when he assumed office he was surprised by media freedom in Egypt.

Asquith said Europe seeks to create an enhanced democratic atmosphere is Egypt, pointing to 50 million Euros in financial support given by the EU for Egyptian civil society organizations to help them oversee elections. He also highlighted British projects that aim to educate Egyptians on their voting rights and train online activists on electoral oversight.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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