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EU poll observation report misleading and baseless : EC

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KATHMANDU — The Election Commission on Thursday has said that the European Union Election Observation Mission (EUEOM)’s report on the recently held elections of the House of Representatives and Provincial Assemblies was misleading and baseless and it ‘totally rejects’ the report.

Terming the report and a press statement issued by the poll observation group as ‘misleading’, ‘baseless’ and ‘in contravention of the international poll observation code of conduct’, the election body, three days after EUEOM released the report, said it has breached the poll observation code of conduct meant for international poll observers and the MoU signed with the EC.

Issuing a press statement, the EC stated,”The report and the press statement released by the organization is totally unacceptable because it has violated the international election observation code of conduct. The report does not carry any truth regarding the peacefully held elections, the results of which have been accepted by all the voters, political parties, candidates and concerned stake holders.”

Furthermore, EC in its straightforward statement signed by Deputy Spokesperson Mukunda Sharma, said that so far, it has been facilitating international organizations to observe elections comfortably but it would be extra cautious while issuing such permissions henceforth.

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EUEOM, in its report, has accused EC of not maintaining transparency while conducting the elections. The poll observation team has suggested to the election body to ‘enhance the transparency of the EC through regular consultations with stakeholders and timely publication of all information of public interest’.

The mission had further stated that the election body’s work lacked transparency although it performed its duties impartially and enjoyed public confidence.

“There was, for example, no mechanism for regular consultations with election stakeholders, and the EC failed to publish critical information on polling center turnout and invalid votes,” the report stated,

Earlier, on Wednesday, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) also had issued a statement regarding the report released by EU saying it had directly challenged the elections held as per the norms of constitution.

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China to enhance mutually beneficial cooperation with Nepal under BRI : Chinese President XI

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BEIJING — Chinese President Xi Jinping has said that China is ready to to strengthen cooperation with Nepal in infrastructure connectivity, post-disaster reconstruction, trade and investment under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

During the meeting woth visiting Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli on Wednesday, President Xi said that the two sides should strengthen cultural cooperation and build a solid foundation of public opinion for enhanced Sino-Nepal relations, according to a statement released by the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA),

President Xi also highlighted the need to strengthen cooperation to curb transnational crime and safeguard the common security of China and Nepal.

“China and Nepal need to strengthen communications and coordination on major international issues,” the Chinese MoFA statement quoted the president as saying.

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“China and Nepal are friendly neighbors sharing weal and woe since the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Nepal,” Xi said, “The two countries have always carried out mutually beneficial cooperation on the basis of the ‘Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence.'”

While appreciating Nepal’s One-China policy, President Xi reiterated Chinese support for safeguarding Nepal’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“China supports Nepal in independently choosing a social system and development path suited to its national conditions and hopes Nepal will achieve its development goals at an early date,” the statement further quoted Xi as saying during the meeting.

China appreciates Nepal’s firm adherence to the one-China policy and will, as always, support Nepal’s efforts to safeguard national independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity and support Nepal’s independent choice of social system and development, Xi said.

During the meeting, Prime Minister Oli extended his heartfelt congratulations to President Xi for the successful conclusion of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in 2017 as well as the annual sessions of the National People’s Congress (NPC) and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in 2018, according to a press statement issued by the Embassy of Nepal in Beijing.

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The Prime Minister also congratulated the Chinese president for successfully holding the 18th Summit of the Shanghai Co-operation Organization (SCO) last week and on his assuming chairmanship of the organization.

Prime Minister Oli has also handed over an invitation letter sent by President Bidya Devi Bhandari to President Xi to visit Nepal.

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