Kyiv Post.  Strasbourg – The European Parliament (EP) has expressed regret at the fact that, according to international observers' evaluations, the 2012 parliamentary elections in Ukraine failed to meet major international standards "and constitute a step backwards compared with the national elections in 2010."

"[The EP] expresses regret at the fact that, according to the OSCE, PACE, NATO Parliamentary Assembly and European Parliament observers, the election campaign, electoral process and post-electoral process failed to meet major international standards and constitute a step backwards compared with the national elections in 2010," reads the text of the resolution adopted by the EP in Strasbourg on Thursday.

The EP pointed at a number of negative aspects of the pre-election period, particularly (the arrest of opposition political leaders, the lack of a level playing field, caused primarily by the misuse of administrative resources, cases of harassment and intimidation of candidates and electoral staff, a lack of transparency in campaign and party financing, and a lack of balanced media coverage.

In addition, the resolution mentions irregularities and delays in the vote count and tabulation process, as well as the imprisonment of opposition political leaders.

"[The EP] stresses that the fact that two leaders of the opposition, Yulia Tymoshenko and Yuriy Lutsenko, and others were held in jail during the elections, which adversely affected the electoral process," reads the resolution.

The EP also called on the new Ukrainian government "to continue strengthening the provisions of the law on party financing in order to provide for more transparency of funding and spending, the full disclosure of sources and amounts of campaign expenditure and the sanctions for violation of campaign funding provisions in particular."

In addition, the EP called on the Ukrainian government to address the electoral irregularities, including the inconclusive results in some election districts, in dialogue with all political parties, and expects, furthermore, the Ukrainian parliament to address in due course the shortcomings of the electoral law.

"[The EP] expresses its concern about the problems relating to the counting and tabulation of votes in a number of single-mandate constituencies; welcomes the decision of the Central Election Commission not to declare a result for these constituencies and the fact that the Ukrainian authorities started to take measures to hold new elections in these constituencies as rapidly possible," reads the resolution.

See also: Foreign Ministry: EP's resolution on Ukraine confirms EU's readiness to intensify cooperation with Kyiv

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