Brussels 21.11.2022 “The European Union takes note of the preliminary results of the 20 November presidential election in Kazakhstan” reads the statement by the spokesperson of the European External Action Service on the outcome of Presidential elections.
“We welcome their efficient preparation as well as wider political and socio-economic reforms initiated by President Tokayev after the tragic January events. The development of resilient democratic institutions and a strong civil society is key for Kazakhstan’s stability and development” the EU diplomacy continues.
“The EU takes note of OSCE/ODIHR’s preliminary conclusions stating that the election took place in a political environment lacking competitiveness. We call for Kazakhstan’s authorities to strengthen the reform process to increase political pluralism and citizens’ participation in political life. Looking ahead, it will be crucial for Kazakhstan to implement fully the OSCE/ODIHR recommendations.
“The EU will continue to work with Kazakhstan in line with our Enhanced Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (EPCA), and to support the implementation of important reforms, to enable a fully transparent and competitive political environment as key steps towards a new democratic and fair Kazakhstan.
“Kazakhstan is an important and valuable partner of the European Union. We share an interest to develop our cooperation further as we prepare to mark 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations in February 2023. We remain committed to the universal principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity in line with the UN principles, as well as international security, fundamental freedoms and human rights”.
Russia’s leading opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, has been found guilty of embezzlement, Russia media report.
A judge was still reading the verdict in the city of Kirov, but news agencies said it was clear in his remarks that Mr Navalny had been convicted.
Even a suspended sentence would bar the outspoken critic of President Putin from running for president next year.
Mr Navalny has denied the accusations, saying the case is politically motivated.
Navalny’s team thanked everyone for support via TWITTER , adding that it the best one can do at the moment.
Launching the presidential campaign this weekend in Lyon – France second biggest city and major centre for banking, chemical, pharmaceutical, and biotech industries – the leader of Front National Marine Le Pen promised to organise a referendum on the European Union membership, following the UK example.
In her speech #Marine gave a negative characteristic to the European Union, incapable to fulfill its promises on prosperity, and even less on security, becoming simply a “nightmare”for French citizens. The event gathered a considerable audience of three thousand people, approximately two thousands more could not enter, and over the weekend all together 10.000 supporters were involved in related activities.
A day earlier Lyon welcomed the centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron, who upgraded his status after the disgraced front-runner Francois Fillon lost 16% in approval polls. On contrary to #Marine, Macron favors closer ties with the #EU, namely in security and defence.
Although as a Finance minister Macron has urged the need to reform euro, and has criticized the current status quo: “The truth is that we must collectively recognise that the euro is incomplete and cannot last without major reforms,” Macron said in his speech at the Humboldt University in Berlin. “It has not provided Europe with full international sovereignty against the dollar on its rules. It has not provided Europe with a natural convergence between the different member states.” He has never questioned French membership in the organisation.
Based on opinion polls Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron as highly probable contestants in the second round of the presidential elections. While the Socialist candidate Benoit Hamon would hardly be able to overcome the unpopularity of his party in 78 days left before the vote; and after Francois Fillon self-inflicted downfall the centre-right Republicans entered a profound crisis, making a swift recovery almost impossible.