Association of European Election Officials (ACEEEO)

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ACEEEO Newsletter - April 2020

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1. Online Symposium on Elections in Times of Epidemic

5 May 2020

The ACEEEO invites all the interested to attend the Online Symposium on Elections in Times of Epidemic to be held on 5 May 2020, 14.00 (CET).

Disruption in elections is not a new phenomenon, because EMBs organized elections among challenging circumstances in post-conflict situations, natural disasters, and even pandemics before. But since the COVID-19 pandemic went worldwide, new challenges arose which should be discussed by professionals in order to be able to make the most appropriate decision. There is no unique formula with a tested script of the steps to follow at times of pandemics. Certain countries affected by the COVID-19 decided to postpone elections, others introduced special measures in the conduct of elections. Each of these decisions have their short-term and long-term risks and opportunities.

The ACEEEO, in line with its primary goal, namely, to promote democratic procedures in the region, initiates an Online Symposium for electoral stakeholders to discuss the pros and cons of the solutions implemented by EMBs. This Symposium serves to contribute to this ongoing discussion, by highlighting the general key considerations and challenges, and by focusing on the South Korean and Polish examples. In South Korea elections were held amidst the epidemic, on 15 April. In Poland the presidential election is supposed to be held on 10 May, however, some argue that the elections should be rather postponed. Both countries serve examples worth examining, both from a general democratic, and from an electoral expert perspective.


14.00 – 14.10 – Greetings from Zsolt Szolnoki, Secretary General, ACEEEO

14.10 – 14.20 – Elections in the ACEEEO region in times of Covid-19 – Key considerations and challenges, presented by János Mécs, project manager, ACEEEO

14.20 – 14.40 – Elections held in South Korea, 15 April – Best practices and first-hand experiences

14.40 – 15.00 – To be held, or not to be held? – The Polish experience

15.00 – 15.30 – Free discussion, moderated by Zsolt Szolnoki, Secretary General, ACEEEO

The Online Symposium is freely accessible, however, prior registration is needed. If you wish to participate, please send an e-mail to


2. Recent events in the ACEEEO

Celebrating the Global Elections Day

6 February 2020

The Electoral Management Bodies of the ACEEEO commemorated the Global Elections Day for the 15th time on 6 February 2020.

On the occasion of the Global Elections Day, the Central Commission of the Republic of Belarus on Elections and Republican Referendums on February 5, 2020 organized a meeting with a group of high school students in Minsk. The Permanent Electoral Authority of Romania celebrated the Global Election Day by a public debate and press conference with the partner institutions with election responsibilities and parliamentary political parties’ representatives. The Central Election Commission of Georgia hosted the members of the Parliament of the Students of Georgia. On 6 February, Chairperson of the CEC of Georgia and the President of the ACEEEO, Tamar Zhvania, participated in the formal launch of the new Electoral Psychology Observatory (EPO) in the London School of Economics (LSE). In the course of her visit, Ms. Zhvania also participated in the interactive roundtable discussion held in the Houses of Parliament within the framework of the launch event. The Central Election Commission of Bosnia and Herzegovina had on February 6, 2020 held a meeting with the employees of the BiH CEC Secretariat and dr. Ahmet Šantić, member of the BiH CEC delivered a speech. The Central Election Commission of the Republic of Bulgaria held an official session together with the representatives of the Public Council of the Central Election Commission and students from the Law Faculty at the Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”. The Central Electoral Commission of the Republic of Lithuania has organised a discussion on the topic „The role of the media in elections: from political advertising to fake news“. Central Election Commission of the Republic of Moldova marked Global Elections Day by receiving a group of students from the Faculty of International Relations, Political and Administrative Sciences from Moldova State. The Central Commission for Elections and Referenda of the Kyrgyz Republic held an Open Day together with the OSCE Program Office in Bishkek and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES). As part of this event, a meeting was organized with students with the participation of the Chairperson of the CEC Nurjan Shaildabekova. In her presentation the Chairperson highlighted the role of youth in the electoral process. Central Election Commission of Albania, as it has already become a tradition, celebrated Global Elections Day on the first Thursday of February. The symbolism and goal of this day, brought together in the CEC premises, women activists of civil society, the roma youth of the Institute of Roma Culture in Albania, disabled people, students of the Faculty of Journalism, graduates of Tirana secondary schools. The State Electoral Commission of the Republic of Croatia marked the Global Elections Day on 6th February 2020 with the launch of the second part of its education programme „My vote also counts!“.

On the Global Elections Day (6 February) the ACEEEO Secretariat organized a ‘Roundtable discussion on the thirty years of the Hungarian democratic elections’. The roundtable marked the anniversary of the first free Hungarian elections which were held in the spring of 1990, following the regime-change. It also gave an overview of the main changes in the electoral field which occurred during the past thirty years, as well as introduced insights about the possible ways of development in the field of elections in the next decade. The roundtable was attended by electoral experts, practitioners and members of academia. The first session was dedicated to the first elections held in 1990 and the societal-political context influencing the organization of these elections.  In the second session the developments and challenges of the electoral system in the past 30 years were discussed. The third session was dedicated to the ideas about the next decade of the Hungarian elections.

For further information please visit:


ACEEEO Executive Board Meeting

April 2020 (Online Resolution)

Due to the spread of the COVID-19 virus which prevented physical gatherings around the world the ACEEEO Executive Board meeting of Spring 2020 had been held via electronic means. Executive Board Members reviewed the annual report on the ACEEEO activities, approved the annual financial report for the year 2019, reviewed the information on the annual membership fees, and decided to put on the agenda of the upcoming General Assembly meeting the postumus Honorary Membership of Mr. István Zsuffa, former Program Director of the ACEEEO Secretariat.

Furthermore, the Executive Board discussed and adopted the description of the 29th Annual Conference and General Assembly of the ACEEEO with the note that Conference Organizers are planning to hold the Annual conference between 9-11 September, in Tbilisi, Georgia. However, in the current international situation, which is linked to the spread of COVID-19 virus, the date of the Conference should be considered as a proposal. The Organizers care about the safety of the participants, therefore, they observe the development of the international situation and the recommendations of the WHO and Ministries of Foreign Affairs. Thus, the Organizers should inform the ACEEEO Members, as well as other potential conference participants about the set date of the conference as soon as possible.


3. Elections in the region



Type of election

postponed from 12 April

North Macedonia

Early Parliamentary

postponed from 26 April



10 May



30 August









4 October



11 and 25 October



23 December



late 2020



late 2020 or 2021