On 27 June, the Observer Mission of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), which is monitoring the elections of deputies to the Senate of the Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan, met with Deputy Chairman of the Central Election Commission of Kazakhstan Vladimir Foos. The SCO mission is headed by SCO Deputy Secretary-General Wang Kaiwen.
At the meeting, Mr Foos expressed gratitude to the SCO for participating in the monitoring of the Senate elections and told about the work by election commissions on preparing and holding elections. "According to the Constitution of Kazakhstan, 32 Senate deputies are elected on the basis of indirect suffrage by secret ballot by electors that are deputies of maslikhats (representative bodies) that are, in turn, elected by the citizens of Kazakhstan at general elections. Thus, the people of Kazakhstan take part in the formation of the Senate via their representatives. Fifteen members of the Senate are appointed by the President of Kazakhstan with the view to ensure representation for all the diverse national, cultural and other important interests of society," Mr Foos said.
Wang Kaiwen noted that the SCO mission will perform its functions in line with the legislation of Kazakhstan and universally accepted international election norms, as well as the Statute of the SCO Observer Mission at Presidential and/or Parliamentary Elections and Referendums, and will observe the principles of political neutrality and non-interference in the internal affairs of states and the electoral process. He praised the multifaceted activities of the Central Election Commission of Kazakhstan during preparations for this important internal political event and the media's active coverage of the upcoming elections.
The meeting was attended by the members of the SCO mission — representatives of legislative, executive and electoral bodies of the SCO member states and officials of the SCO Secretariat.
Elections to the Senate of the Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan will take place on 28 June 2017. For the first time, 3,335 voters from the regions of Kazakhstan will vote online. As of today, 172 international observers and 116 journalists have registered to cover the elections.