Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections

Праваабарончы цэнтр «Вясна» беларускі хельсінкскі камітэт

Parliamentary elections: Analytical report on first day of early voting

Observation is carried out by activists of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee and the Human Rights Center “Viasna” in the framework of the campaign Human Rights Defenders For Free Elections

In accordance with the Electoral Code, early voting opened on September 6.

306 short-term observers of the campaign "Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections" are involved in daily observation of the early voting at 153 polling stations across the country.

Observation results are processed on a daily basis and constitute a representative sample (observation covers 2.5% of the 5,971 polling stations). These data allow observers to estimate the basic tendencies of early voting. The below information was processed based on data received from 153 polling stations as of 23:00, September 6.

According to the campaign’s observers, the number of voters registered during the first day of early voting amounted to 7,695 people, while the PECs’ protocols claimed there were 8,359 people. The difference amounts to 664 people, or 8%. In the 2012 parliamentary elections, the difference was 6.7% based on observation at 150 polling stations.

The abnormally large discrepancy between the numbers in the official protocols and the data reported by the observer was documented in the following polling stations: PEC No. 46, DEC No. 3 in Svietlahorsk (PEC data — 49, observers’ reports — 18), PEC No. 11, DEC No. 84 in Mahilioŭ (217 and 85, respectively), PEC No. 17, DEC No. 52 in Hrodna (77 and 29, respectively), PEC No. 122, DEC No. 94 of Minsk (105 and 9, respectively), PEC No. 401, DEC No. 103 in Minsk (80 and 66, respectively), PEC No. 420, DEC No. 103 (56 and 19, respectively), PEC No. 8, DEC No. 6 in Baranavičy (57 and 30, respectively), PEC No. 12, DEC No. 59 in Smarhoń (57 and 19, respectively).

In general, the difference between the PEC data and the observers’ reports on voter turnout was documented at 28.6% of the polling stations covered by the observation.

Just like in previous election campaigns, the observers report massive coercion of students to vote early.