Talawy dismisses EU EOM members out of NCW conference
YOUM7/Emad Abd El-Rahman
By RANDA EL-BANNA

CAIRO: A video showing Dr. Mervat el-Talawy dismissing two members of the EU Election Observation Mission (EOM) from a conference held Saturday to discuss women’s participation in the presidential election was published by Al-Masry al-Youm TV.

Talawy can be seen saying to the EOM members, “Your report is not acceptable and you have to take it back,” adding, “You are out of the Middle East.”

Talawy told The Cairo Post that she dismissed them because their report interfered in Egypt’s internal affairs.

She added that their mission was to observe whether we had “a democratic free election or not and this is not what they did.”

She also said that they commented on the Minya verdict – where more than 500 defendants were sentenced to death – and that the report also addressed the low turnout of voters during the election, which according to Talawy was high and reached 47.3 percent.

She also criticized the EOM saying that NGOs do not have enough freedom to operate, “which is not their job to decide on.”

Regarding criticism of the death sentences, she claimed the EU apologized for their comments after having understood the circumstances of the verdict, “yet Chief Observer Mario David criticized it again on May 29.”

Media Advisor of the EOM Eberhard Laue told The Cairo Post that there was no report other than the preliminary report issued during a press conference on May 29 that was presented by Chief Observer Mario David.

Laue added that the official issued report is available on the EU’s website.

Regarding observing parliamentary elections, Laue told The Cairo Post, “The mandate of this particular EU EOM is limited to the electoral process of the presidential election. We are unable to comment on unknown future developments.”

EU EOM held a press conference on Tuesday where they revealed the initial report on the presidential election.

The report said that the election was democratic and that turnout reached 47.3 percent, according HPEC reports.

The percentage was considered to be fair according to Robert Goebbels, the head of the Short Term Observers Mission, who said during the press conference that a high turnout is not a guarantee for a free and fair election.

“For example elections held in North Korea to elect a president had a turnout of 99.9 percent and this is not a guarantee of a fair election,” Goebbels said.

Member of the short term delegation and Member of the European Parliament Susy De Martini told the Cairo Post Thursday that the 47.3 percent turnout is “a really good percentage and is more than what is witnessed during elections in Europe.”

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