Telesur is reporting that Organization of American States mission has ruled out the possibility of fraud taking place during Sunday’s election. On Friday, the head of the OAS mission, Gustavo Fernández, informed the diplomatic corps that the pre-electoral period has been “calm” and without violence, and that the mission has thus far not seen any indication of fraud.
(Informal translation by CISPES, please visit Telesur for the original in Spanish)
The 62 members of the Organization of American States’ (OAS) Electoral Observer Mission who are now deployed throughout the country have not, thus far, observed any indications of a possible coup d’états, electoral fraud, or boycott of the electoral process. The head of the OAS observer mission, Gustavo Fernández, confirmed that the “pre-electoral climate is one of calmness and no possibilities of fraud have been detected.”
According to Fernández, since his arrival in the county, “the first impression we have is that the electoral campaign, which ended on Wednesday, has been more calm than [past elections]; there has not been violence or at least none that has called our attention,” he noted.
“This time the election doesn’t have these dramatic additions,” as there have been during previous electoral periods in El Salvador, emphasized the head of the OAS observer mission.
He added, “So far, we haven’t detected anything that could be called an intentional strategy designed to create fraud; we’re not seeing those indications.”
However, he specified that there could be exceptions. “We’re also seeing that, without reaching the levels of past years, political tensions are rising as election day gets closer.”
The OAS mission is made up of 62 election observers who will observe the elections throughout all 14 departments in the Central American country. The delegates will monitor the “electoral organization and technology, juridical framework, campaign financing and political analysis.”
Supreme Electoral Tribunal will continue receiving absentee ballots from outside the country
El Salvador’s Supreme Electoral Tribunal will continue to receive the absentee ballots from resident in the United States and Canada while final preparations are carried out for Sunday’s election on February 2.
Telesur’s correspondent Ernesto Ávalos reports that the TSE has received “more than 2,100 votes this week and expects that before the polls open, over 5,000 votes from Salvadoran living outside of the country will have been received,” though 10,000 people were registered.
Regarding the preparations for election day, the reporter noted that on Saturday, the TSE will begin distributing the ballots and election materials. “Four thousand international observers have been registered and 2,800 journalists will be protected by security personnel,” he reported.
[Note: according to reporting from EFE and others, the President of the TSE, Eugenio Chicas, reported that 4.148 observers have been accredited, of which 2318 are Salvadoran nationals and the other 1830 are international observers]