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OSCE welcomes peaceful voting in Kosovo for Serbian election

DUBLIN, 21 May 2012 – As OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, the Tánaiste today welcomed the peaceful and orderly voting in Kosovo for the  second round of the Serbian presidential election of 20 May.

“I welcome the completion of voting in Kosovo in the second round of the Serbian presidential election, following the similar exercise on 6 May for the Serbian parliamentary and presidential elections. I am satisfied that the elections took place in a peaceful and orderly manner, with responsible behaviour demonstrated by all sides.”

The OSCE Secretary General, Lamberto Zannier said: “We have completed our task. We brought the voting materials to Kosovo and at the end back to Vranje and Raska for counting by the Serbian Republican Election Commission. We operated 90 polling stations throughout Kosovo and enabled eligible voters to exercise their democratic right by casting their ballots. This is an excellent example of how positive and constructive dialogue, involving local and international institutions, can lead to practical solutions on the ground.”

Both the Chairperson and Secretary General thanked the entire staff of the OSCE Mission in Kosovo as well as the neighbouring OSCE field operations for their efforts over the past few weeks.  They also expressed gratitude to the police, KFOR and EULEX for their assistance and support.

“The OSCE has once again demonstrated its ability to rise to meet new challenges, engage all relevant actors and successfully conduct a demanding operation in a very tight timeframe,” concluded the Chairperson.

The OSCE Mission in Kosovo has some 670 personnel.  For this exercise the Mission was reinforced by some additional 300 locally-recruited short-term staff and more than 100 OSCE staff members deployed from other field operations in South-Eastern Europe.