US NGOs Demand OSCE Observers Monitor Nov. Elections, Fear Voter Discrimination

President Barack Obama casts his ballot during early voting at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center in Chicago, Ill., Oct. 25, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama casts his ballot during early voting at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center in Chicago, Ill., Oct. 25, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

MOSCOW – In June, the OSCE announced plans to send around 500 observers to monitor the US elections in the fall.

“An American civil rights group is urging the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe () to expand its election monitoring mission in the United States and to target resources to states where voter discrimination and intimidation is most likely… A confluence of factors has made the right to vote more vulnerable to racial discrimination than at any time in recent history. The need for additional election observers is paramount,” the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights said in a statement.

In addition, the group deemed “a tidal wave of voter discrimination efforts” present in the United States.

The group urged the OSCE to target its resources to states which had adopted “discriminatory restrictions” or were likely to see “enhanced voter intimidation efforts.” Such states include Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Arizona, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and Texas, according to the group.

The OSCE is an international multilateral organization which, among other things, sends election monitors to its participating countries, including the United States. The OSCE has sent observers to every US presidential election since 2002.

The US presidential elections are scheduled for November 8.

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