Below are the �2010 Election Watch� highlights for Week 32, covering 12-18 October:
- SPDC Election Commission Chairman Thein Soe said that no foreign journalists or international monitors would be allowed to observe the upcoming elections.
- SPDC Election Commission Chairman Thein Soe said that 3,071 candidates, including 82 independent candidates, will contest the elections.
- Civil servants said that Union Solidarity and Development Party produced campaign leaflets, newsletters, hats and T-shirts free of charge using SPDC Ministry of Information equipment and garment factories under the supervision of the SPDC Ministry of Industry-1.
- Union Solidarity and Development Party officials went door to door in Townships in Rangoon and Irrawaddy Divisions and Arakan State and asked people for advanced votes with offers of money and other opportunities in return.
- Fifty Union Solidarity and Development Party members staged a protest against the National Democratic Party for Development at the entrance of Aleythankyaw Village, Maungdaw Township, Arakan State, and forced the party to cancel its plan to campaign there.
- SPDC Army troops from LIB 268, police, and civil servants in Falam, Chin State, urged Chin people not to vote for the Union Solidarity and Development Party in the upcoming election.
- Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said that Burma �can never achieve democracy with elections that are unfair and which will be held according to [the SPDC�s] wishes.�
- National Democratic Force leader Khin Maung Swe said the Union Solidarity and Development Party is �acting like the ruling party� and �can do anything that it likes� in its campaign.
- US State Department spokesman PJ Crowley called the SPDC�s decision not the have outside observers �par for the course.�
- UN Sec-Gen Ban Ki-moon said that failure to release political prisoners and to respect the freedoms of expression, assembly, and association �could seriously undermine the credibility of the elections.�
You can find comprehensive monitoring of the 2010 elections on the �2010 Election Watch� website. The Election Watch summarizes developments according to indicators drawn from UN, OSCE, and EU guidelines. You can also join our 2010 Election Watch facebook page to receive the latest Election Watch updates.
Yours, in solidarity,