UN Agency Warns of Electoral Violence in Asia

Posted June 30th, 2011 at 12:05 am (UTC-5)
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A United Nations agency is calling for strong oversight and other measures to strengthen election credibility in Asia, saying the risk of electoral violence is high in the region.

In a report released Wednesday, the U.N. Development Program says even the suspicion of election fraud can be enough to spark violence in democracies where the public lacks confidence in authorities.

The report says political parties and their supporters are often the instigators of election violence. But it says the problem can be exacerbated by corrupt or partisan security forces or media that use inflammatory rhetoric to promote narrow interests.

The UNDP says the problem can be addressed with better-designed political systems, effective election monitoring and improved civil education.

The report was based on a study of electoral processes in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines and Thailand.