EU provides 750,000 Euros to Palestinian Central Elections Commission


Jerusalem : The European Union has handed over 750,000 Euros to the Palestinian Central Elections Commission (CEC) to help it successfully pave the way for future elections in the occupied Palestinian Territory.

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Roy Dickinson, European Commission’s Head of Operations in Jerusalem, and Dr Hanna Nasser, Chairman of the CEC, signed Monday a grant agreement for 750,000 Euros to fund four projects, to be implemented in the coming 12 months by the CEC.

Dickinson said: “The European Union has always appreciated the professionalism, independence and effectiveness of the Central Elections Commission. We will continue to be a reliable partner for the CEC and will support them in their continued efforts towards the creation of an independent, viable and democratic Palestinian state.”

“We highly appreciate this grant. The CEC is thankful for the European Union’s continued support. The EU has, over a number of years, played a vital role in supporting the Palestinian people and their institutions and has specifically funded several projects that enabled the CEC to achieve its goals to conduct free and fair elections,” said Dr Nasser on signing the agreement.

The CEC will use the grant for a wide-scale elections outreach programme in Palestinian schools, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education. The CEC will train school teachers on the elections system and provide materials to enable them to organise mock elections in schools to familiarise students with the Palestinian elections system.

The grant will also finance the CEC planned voter registration exercise in 2009, with voter registration of first-time voters in schools, the deployment of mobile registration teams and the establishment of a continuous voter registration system.

The grant will also allow the CEC to carry out vital upgrades to their information technology capacities and to introduce an electronic documents management system to further bolster the CEC operational capacity.

The European Union, through its PEGASE mechanism, provides assistance to help improve the living standard of Palestinians across the Territory, as well as funding programmes and projects to help build the future Palestinian state.