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EU Won’t Send Election Envoys To Aceh

BY NURDIN HASAN


Banda Aceh, TAG – European Union will not officially send its election envoys to monitor the up-coming Aceh local election on 9 April despite warning from a Brussels-based think tank group of potential for isolated acts of violence between now and then is high and trouble after results are announced may be even higher.
The reasons not to send election monitors based on evaluation that the election is the same as other local elections in Indonesia, senior decentralization adviser of Crisis Management Initiative (CMI), Bernhard May, said after a meeting with Aceh acting governor, Tarmizi A. Karim, on Wednesday.
The CMI is a Finnish-based organization founded by former President Martti Ahtisaari that mediated a peace dialogues between Indonesian government and the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) leaders in Helsinki in 2005. 
After five rounds peace talks, both sides signed a historic accord on 15 Agustus 2005 to end a bloody guerillas war in Aceh, an oil and gas rich region located on the northern tip of Sumatra island, that claimed more than 25,000 lives, mostly civilians.
“There’s no need to send monitors from outside country because Aceh election is same as other regions in Indonesia. What’s for you need the special attention from outside. It would run as usual,” May told journalists. “EU won’t officially send (election monitors to Aceh).”
May came to Aceh along with other CMI envoys to monitor the situation of Aceh ahead of a long-awaited election. The team led by Jaakko Oksanen, country director for Aceh peace follow-up. It is a second directly election held in Aceh after peace agreement reached.
As reported earlier, a Brussels-based global think tank International Crisis Group (ICG) warned that despite rhetorical commitments of all contenders to a peaceful election in Indonesia's Aceh province, the potential for isolated acts of violence between now and then is high and trouble after results are announced may be even higher.
Getting as many trained monitors to Aceh as possible in the coming weeks is critical. Election monitors should begin deployment to Aceh long before the election to deter intimidation,” the ICG said in a press statement obtained by The Aceh Globe.
“Whether violence materialises will depend on several factors, including the speed with which local election monitors can take up position in some of the most contested districts, like Bireuen and east Aceh” districts,” Sidney Jones, ICG senior adviser, said.
“It is also important that the police move quickly to pursue those responsible for a series of killings in December and January so that rumours of political motivation can either be laid to rest or conclusively proven.”[]
EU Won’t Send Election Envoys To Aceh EU Won’t Send Election Envoys To Aceh Reviewed by Nurdin Hasan on March 08, 2012 Rating: 5

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