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IOM Supports Libyan Out of Country Voting

By International Office of Migration (IOM)
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GENEVA, Switzerland, February 18, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- IOM has helped over 7,000 Libyans in 13 countries to take part in the country's upcoming constitutional drafting assembly elections, at the request of the Libyan High National Election Commission (HNEC).

The three-day out-of-country poll, which ran from February 15th–17th, allowed Libyans in Canada, Egypt, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Jordan, Malaysia, Qatar, Tunisia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States to vote in the elections, which will take place in Libya on February 20th.

The elections to the assembly, which will be composed of 20 members each from Libya's three regions – Tripolitania, Cyrenaica and Fezzan – were mandated by a vote of the General National Congress. The assembly will draw up a draft constitution which will then be voted on in a referendum.

IOM worked closely with HNEC advisers and Libyan embassies in target countries to reach out to the Libyan diaspora and encourage voter registration. Of the 7,067 people who registered, roughly two thirds were men and one third was women.

Outreach activities included developing mailing lists; printing and distributing thousands of posters and flyers; holding community Q&A sessions; and engaging other Libyan institutions including schools, student bodies and the business community to disseminate information about the poll.

IOM and HNEC also prepared a manual laying out the procedures for establishing polling centers and how to conduct polling. IOM country coordinators in the target countries and training professionals used the manual to train members of the Libyan diaspora employed as polling staff.

Accredited observers from international and local organizations were on hand to witness the voting process in all 13 countries.