Further to an announcement on April 23rd, 2014 by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Canada will be sending a large, independent team of election observers to monitor the Presidential election in Ukraine, scheduled for May 25th, 2014.

The Canadian election observation mission will include 38 long-term and 300 short-term observers. The first group of 100 STOs will be deployed for the first round and 200 for the second.  

Since 1991, Canada has invested considerable effort and resources in support of Ukraine's democratic transformation, and during this time, Canadian election observers have monitored numerous presidential and parliamentary elections, and helped promote credible elections and adoption of internationally recognized best practices by Ukraine’s electoral establishment.

This initiative builds on Canada’s tradition of assisting Ukraine’s ongoing democratic development through bilateral election observation missions. This contingent of election observers is in addition to Canada’s strong contribution of monitors attached to the multilateral observation mission being mounted by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) – bringing Canada’s total contribution of election observers to 500.

Canadian Election Observation Missions (CANEOM) is proud to contribute to this tradition through its engagement with the government of Canada – specifically, the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development.

CANEOM is organized by the Forum of Federations. Cuso International and the Ukrainian Canadian Congress have partnered with CANEOM to support the observation mission for Ukraine’s 2014 Presidential election. The mission is entirely funded by the Government of Canada, and managed at arm’s length. CANEOM’s mandate is to organize and execute election observation and monitoring missions internationally. The mission is not an advocacy mission for federalism or any other kind of governing structure. It is not the role of the election observer mission to advocate, promote or oppose change in Ukraine's constitutional order.

The mission's objectives are to observe, record and report on the electoral exercise, and to aggregate findings into a final report on whether the election results may be deemed to reflect the genuine democratic expression of the Ukrainian people.

Members of CANEOM’s core team for this mission have experience monitoring elections in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Djibouti, Georgia, Haiti, Indonesia, Lesotho, Mali, Mongolia and Ukraine, with additional democratic development experience in an even greater range of countries.

CANEOM will assess Ukraine's electoral process in accordance with international standards, commitments and obligations for genuine democratic elections, including the OSCE's Copenhagen Declaration of 1990 and other international human rights obligations. CANEOM subscribes to the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observers and Code of Conduct for International Election Observers that was commemorated at the United Nations on October 27, 2005, and endorsed by 42 intergovernmental and international organizations.

In all of our mission’s activities, CANEOM pledges to adhere to all domestic laws, and to respect the core election observation principles of impartiality and non-interference.

CANEOM Management Team for the Canadian Bilateral Election Observation Mission for the 2014 Ukraine Presidential Election

Head of Mission – to be announced

Yaroslav Baran – Deputy Head of Mission
Yaroslav is a seasoned political communication and parliamentary management professional, and a partner in one of Ottawa’s leading Public Affairs consultancies. He has served previously as Communications Director for the 2010 and 2012 Canadian election observation missions to Ukraine. He has also been involved in bilateral democratic development missions in Africa and Asia, and is on the board of directors of the Canadian NGO CANADEM.

Kevin Colbourne - Mission Director
Kevin has been a member of election observation missions in various countries including Ukraine, Indonesia, Afghanistan and Lesotho. Kevin has also led the long-term observation mission in Bangladesh for the National Democratic Institute, and was the director of the Election Observation Program for Democracy International in Djibouti.

Taras Zalusky – Political Analyst
Taras has had significant experience in election monitoring in Ukraine.  In 2004 and 2010 he was Chief of Staff for the Canadian bilateral observation mission for the Presidential elections in Ukraine. In 2012 he served as Chief of Staff to the Canadian bilateral observation mission for the Parliamentary elections in Ukraine.

Orest Zakydalsky – Political Analyst
Orest has served as a team leader on the bilateral Canadian election observer mission to Ukraine in 2004. He was a short-term observer for the 2010 Presidential election and in 2012 he was political analyst for the Canadian election observer mission to the Parliamentary election in Ukraine. He also contributed as apolitical analyst for the Canadian election observer mission to the repeat parliamentary elections in five districts in December, 2013.

Ann Szyptur – Long Term Observer (LTO) Coordinator
Ann has been a short term, medium-term and long-term observation coordinator and head of mission for organizations including CANADEM, International Organization for Migration (IOM), Carter Center and the Canada-Ukraine Foundation. This includes the observations for the Out-of-Country Voting (OCV) for the 2011 South Sudanese independence referendum, the Iraqi elections and the Parliamentary and Presidential elections in Ukraine between 2004-2013.  Ann has also worked in the area of capacity building and civil society in Ukraine.

Mateusz Trybowski – Electoral Coordinator
Mateusz is an international elections and democracy specialist with six years of field experience in emerging democracies across Eastern Europe, North Africa and the Caribbean. His expertise includes election observation, political party capacity building and democratic engagement of young people. In December 2013, he served as Deputy Coordinator of the independent Canadian mission to observe repeat parliamentary elections in Ukraine. 

Volodymyr Kozoriz – Finance and Operations
Volodymyr is a senior planning and finance officer specializing in the administration of governance support projects. Volodymyr has 15 years of experience in security, travel and logistics coordination in challenging environments including Ukraine, Southeast Asia and Iraq.


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