Co-operation with the Organisation of
Arabic Speaking Electoral Management Bodies
The Organisation of Arabic Speaking Electoral Management Bodies is an independent, non-profit regional Organisation aiming to support co-operation between the different electoral bodies in the Arab region. The main objective of the Organisation of Arabic speaking Electoral Management Bodies is to provide a forum for sharing national and international experience and best practices in the electoral field. The organisation was established in June 2015.
Its charter provides for three forms of participation in its work: permanent membership, affiliated membership and associate membership. The organisation is made up of three main bodies: the General Assembly, the Executive Office and the Secretariat. The Venice Commission took part in the official launching of the Regional Organisation of the Arab Electoral Management Bodies, which took place in Beirut, Lebanon on 8-9 June 2015. The establishment of the Organisation and strategies for regional cooperation in the field of elections in the Arab world were discussed at the event. Soon after, on 24 October 2015, at the 104th Plenary Session (23-24 October 2015), the Venice Commission and the Organisation of Arabic Speaking Electoral Management Bodies signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which sets out the terms and conditions for cooperation. The Venice Commission has provided support as regards sharing of knowledge and awareness raising about the principle of electoral management bodies' independence. It has namely brought together international experience and comparative models from around the world.
In 2017 the Venice Commission assisted the High Electoral Commission of Tunisia to organise the Arab EMBs Second General Assembly as well as a workshop on electoral administrations' independence. This was done in co-operation with the UNDP’s Regional Electoral Support Project.
The Venice Commission, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Independent High Electoral Commission of Jordan, supported the Organisation of Electoral Management Bodies of Arab countries in the preparation of the 3rd General Assembly of Arab Electoral Bodies (Arab EMB), which took place in Sweimeh, Jordan (3-5 February 2019). The Assembly was followed by an international conference on the electoral dispute resolution.
The Organisation of Electoral Management Bodies (EMBs) of Arab countries, assisted by the UN Development Programme’s Regional Electoral Support Project (UNDP), the National Independent Election Commission of Mauritania and the Venice Commission, organised the 4th General Assembly of Arab EMBs. The Assembly took place in Nouakchott, Mauritania, 4-6 March 2020 and was followed by an international conference on the role of media in elections. The conference gave the EMBs from Arab counties an opportunity to exchange views on international principles and standards in the field of media coverage of elections and identify key challenges facing Arab EMBs and other authorities in charge of organising elections.
The Organisation of Electoral Management Bodies (EMBs) of Arab countries, assisted by the UN Development Programme’s Regional Electoral Support Project (UNDP), the Arab network for Youth in elections and the Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs of the UN (DPPA) organised the 5th General Assembly of Arab EMBs which was followed by an international conference on “Youth participation in political life in the Arab region”. These events took place in Amman, Jordan on 22-24 August 2022. The main objective of the conference was to facilitate the exchange of experiences, expertise and good practices among electoral management bodies and Civil society organisations (CSOs) in the Arab region on youth participation in elections, including by identifying the gaps and challenges for meaningful participation of youth and the ways that EMBs and CSOs can collaborate to overcome these challenges. The Arab Youth Network in Elections, which aims to promote youth participation in the electoral process, was officially launched on this occasion. Representatives of the Venice Commission participated in the General Assembly and in the conference.