The EU election observation mission, deployed to observe Egypt's upcoming presidential election, announced on Friday that it would deploy 54 short-term observers to the governorates during voting.
"On election days, they are the ears and the eyes of the EU EOM (Election Observation Mission) across the governorates of Egypt. They report their findings about the election day process back to the headquarters in Cairo. All observers will follow the voting and counting procedures, as well as tabulation of results in urban and rural areas," said Nikolai Vulchanov, the deputy chief observer of the mission in a statement issued on Friday.
“They will not interfere in the electoral process, including by offering advice and assistance to the election officials and other stakeholders. This is the election of the Egyptian people," the statement read.
The deputy chief observer emphasised in his statement that the mission was not there to legitimise the electoral process nor to validate the election results.
He explained the work of the mission as analysis of "the legal framework, the performance of the election administration, the campaign activities of the candidates and political parties, the respect of fundamental freedoms, the access to and conduct of the media, the voting, counting and tabulation of the votes, the complaints and appeals process, and the announcement of the results."
According to the statement, the EU mission has now deployed 94 observers in Egypt. They will be reinforced during polling days by a delegation from the European Parliament and 51 locally recruited observers from the embassies of European Union member states in Egypt. In total, the mission will have around 150 observers including nationals of 28 EU member states, Canada and Norway.
This is the first Egyptian presidential election to be observed by an EU mission. The African Union has also sent an observation mission, as has the Arab League and the Arab Parliament.