With the FMLN party maintaining what the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) has called an “irreversible,” if narrow, lead in the final vote count for El Salvador’s March 9th presidential election, the opposition ARENA party has turned to destabilization tactics, fomenting unrest and misinformation in an effort to contest the election results. On the night of Monday, March 10th, ARENA sent out a massive call on social media to mobilize its militancy for a demonstration the following morning against the TSE. Claiming themselves the victims of a massive electoral conspiracy, ARENA called on its militancy to denounce the TSE’s process as corrupt and demand a vote-by-vote recount. Continue reading
Representatives of the CISPES and SHARE observer missions report to the press
On Tuesday, observers from CISPES and the SHARE Foundation held a press conference for the Salvadoran media to share their observations and evaluation of Sunday’s election, in which a record number of Salvadorans participated to elect their next president. Voter turnout was over 60% and, according the preliminary results, the winning candidate, Salvador Sanchez Ceren, received the highest number of votes of any candidate in the country’s history (over 1.4 million). Continue reading
Today the president of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal, Eugenio Chicas, as well as the Minister of Foreign Relations, Jaime Miranda, gave a presentation to over 50 ambassadors of foreign nations and heads of international organisms stationed in El Salvador to inform them about the elections.
Chicas highlighted the transparency of the result transmission process, in which copies of the original vote counts recorded at voting tables were given to representatives of the Attorney General’s Office, the Human Rights Ombudsman’s Office, and the competing political parties. Continue reading
CISPES observers are currently monitoring the beginning of the voting process. According to reports from national and international elections observers, most polls opened on time without any major problems. Observers did notice high tension between ARENA and FMLN members. Some observers have heard from other national observers that in an attempt to discredit the results, some JRV members are planning not to sign the final “Closing and Counting Act”. We will continue to have more updates and reports from our observers throughout the day.
Francisco Gómez, a member of the Telecommunications Industry Workers Union (SITCOM), appeared on El Salvador’s national television station TVES this morning to denounce coercive actions by maquila factory owners to convince workers to vote for the right-wing ARENA party. He reported that a factory owner in the San Marcos free trade zone invited workers to a breakfast with Norman Quijano, candidate for ARENA, and that after Quijano left, the boss made threats against workers. Continue reading
by U.S.-El Salvador Sister Cities
Check out these reflections about the Feb 2nd first round of El Salvador’s presdential elections from international observers that were part of U.S.- El Salvador Sister Cities’ first round observation delegation:
“U.S. – El Salvador Sister Cities 2014 Election Observation Delegation” by Vic Hinterlang
“Dispatch from Round 1 Election Day” by Rachel Wyon
Sister Cities delegation of international elections observers (Photo: Vic Hinterlang)
by U.S.-El Salvador Sister Cities
The weeks leading up to the first round of elections here were intense, full of last minute campaigning and fresh waves of fear spurred by the spiking crime and murder rate in the new year. To hear ARENA tell it, the crime wave was just another example of the FMLN and current president Mauricio Fune’s soft stance on crime, and a problem that won’t let up should there be another FMLN victory. Furthermore, they allege, the FMLN has actually been working with the gangs, having the gangs pressure people to vote for them. Continue reading