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The Jakarta Post
Saturday, March 3, 2007

EU EOM chief arrives in Aceh to monitor local elections

Veeramalla Anjaiah, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

It's election time again in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam. This time
elections will be held in West Aceh and Southwest Aceh regencies.

The chief of the European Union Election Observation Mission (EU
EOM), Glyn Ford, arrived in Banda Aceh this week to observe the

"Ford and his team will monitor the elections in these two
regencies. The elections will be held on Sunday," EU EOM media
officer Indraneel Datta told The Jakarta Post on Friday.

Ford, a British member of the European Parliament, joins six
two-member observer teams already deployed to monitor the

Ford, a veteran of election monitoring worldwide, is currently
involved in meetings with election officials, candidates and
military authorities to explain the mission's activities and to
assess the electoral process.

"He (Ford) will evaluate the organization and preparation of the
elections in the context of a process free of interference in
which election officials can freely perform their
responsibilities, candidates can reach citizens without
intimidation and voters can freely exercise their rights," the
European Commission Delegation office in Jakarta said in a press
release sent to the Post.

Datta, a French national, said that the 17-member EO EOM team
arrived in Aceh on Feb. 10 and will remain until March 20, 2007.

Following an invitation from the Aceh Independent Election
Commission and the Indonesian government to observe elections on
Dec. 11, 2006, the European Union sent an 82-member mission led
by Ford. The elections were for governor of Aceh and for mayors
and regents in 19 administrative districts. It was the first
such mission to be deployed for local elections by the European