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IRI Announces Arrival of International Assessment Team Ahead of Georgia’s Parliamentary Elections

September 21, 2020

Tbilisi, Georgia – The International Republican Institute (IRI) today announced the arrival of its international Technical Election Assessment Mission (TEAM) to assess the October 31, 2020 parliamentary elections in Georgia. The mission’s deployment follows an invitation from the Georgian Central Electoral Commission (CESKO) and builds upon IRI’s 25-year partnership with Georgia, including previous election observations and assessments conducted over the last decade.

“These parliamentary elections represent an important step for Georgia’s democracy and a litmus test for Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic aspirations,” said IRI Regional Director for Eurasia Stephen Nix. “IRI’s mission will prioritize key issues affecting electoral integrity, including election administration, media freedom and transparency, campaign finance, political party campaigns, as well as voting safety measures being implemented during the COVID-19 crisis.”

The TEAM comprises a diverse group of five technical long-term analysts who will review all phases of the electoral process and issue a series of reports on their findings. These studies will be informed by in-depth interviews with government officials, the electoral administration, political party leaders, civil society and media representatives.

The technical assessment team will conduct its activities in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation and Code of Conduct for International Election Observers, and will base its findings and recommendations on Georgia’s laws, international standards for elections and the commitments made by political parties in the Code of Conduct for Political Parties.

In recognition of the risks posed by COVID-19, IRI has implemented rigorous safety and security procedures requiring the assessment team to adhere to the Georgian government’s health regulations.

About IRI in Georgia

IRI supports a range of programming in the political, electoral and civic space in Georgia, with the aim of making political parties more issue-based, increasing inclusion of under-represented groups in the political decision-making process, bolstering citizen access to accurate and methodologically sound research, and encouraging citizen-centered governance. In addition to the TEAM, the Institute is co-sponsoring Georgia’s first “Election Compass,” a new project that utilizes a voter advance application to help voters understand which political parties align with their political views. IRI’s global youth initiative Generation Democracy is also working with civil society organizations in Georgia to lead a national Get Out the Vote campaign.

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A nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, the International Republican Institute (IRI) advances freedom and democracy worldwide by helping political parties to become more responsive, strengthening transparent and accountable governance, and working to increase the role of marginalized groups in the political process – including women and youth. More information is available at www.iri.org.