- Election Watch
ELECTION RESULTS (September-December 1995)
Algeria: On November 16, ignoring boycott calls from opposition parties and death threats from Islamic militants, 75 percent of Algeria's 16 million eligible voters cast ballots in the country's first contested presidential election since it gained its independence from France in 1962. Observers from the Arab League and the Organization of African Unity termed the elections free and fair. President Liamine Zeroual garnered 61 percent of the vote, while his closest rival, Sheikh Mahfoud Nahnah, head of the moderate Islamist Hamas party, received 25 percent.
Azerbaijan: On November 12, Azeris elected a 125-member parliament. President Heydar Aliyev's New Azerbaijan Party garnered 19 seats, while the Azerbaijan Popular Front and the Party for National Independence took 3 seats each. Independents won a total of 71 seats. Runoff elections in February 1996 will determine the outcome of the 29 remaining seats. European and U.S. monitors reported widespread irregularities, and dismissed the elections as rigged.
Belarus: Despite President Alyaksandr Lukashenka's efforts to suppress voting, over 52 percent of Belarusians turned out on December 10 to elect 59 candidates to the 260-member Supreme Soviet. This, combined with the 20 seats filled on November 29 and the 119 filled in May, gave the legislature 198 members, enough to achieve a quorum.
Côte d'Ivoire: In voting widely criticized as unfair, President Henri Konan Bédié of the ruling Democratic Party won reelection with over 90 percent of the vote on October 22, and his party took at least 133 seats in the 175-seat National Assembly on November 27.
Croatia: In parliamentary elections on October 29, President Franjo Tudjman's ruling party, the Croatian Democratic Union, retained its majority, winning 75 seats in the 127-seat House of Representatives. The Five-Party Alliance (comprising the Peasant Party, Istrian Democratic Parliament, People's Party, Christian Democratic Union, and Party of Slavonia and Baranja) obtained 16 seats, followed by the Social Liberal Party (12 seats) and the Social Democratic Party (10 seats). The remain- ing seats were divided among minor opposition parties and independents.
Egypt: Over 25 people were killed, and about 1,000 activists linked to the Muslim Brotherhood arrested, in the weeks leading up to the November 29 parliamentary elections. Of the 444 seats in parliament, President Hosni Mubarak's National Democratic Party won 317, independents (mostly progovernment) secured 114, the liberal Wafd party 6, the leftist Tagammu party 5, and the Nasserites and Ahrar party 1 seat each. The government rejected international observers and did not facilitate domestic monitoring efforts. There were widespread claims of irregularities.
Georgia: In presidential elections on November 6, incumbent Eduard Shevardnadze won 75 percent of the popular vote. His nearest rival, Dzhumbar Patiashvili, received 15 percent. In parliamentary elections held the same day, Shevardnadze's Citizens' Union secured 105 seats in the 235-member parliament, the National Democratic Party, 35, and the Union of Georgia's Revival, 27. The remaining seats were split among minor opposition parties and independents.
Guatemala: Marked by a low turnout and peaceful voting, the November 12 presidential elections gave a clear plurality to National Advancement Party (PAN) leader Alvaro Arzú, who won 36.6 percent of the vote. Alfonso Portillo of the Guatemalan Republican Front (FRG) obtained second place with 22.1 percent, followed by Fernando Andrade of the National Center Union (UCN) coalition (12.9 percent) and Jorge González del Valle of the New Guatemala Democratic Front (FDNG) with 7.7 percent. Arzú was set to face Portillo in runoff elections scheduled for 7 January 1996. In elections for the 80-seat parliament, the PAN won 43 seats; the FRG, 21; the FDNG, 6; and the UCN, 3.
Haiti: Presidential elections were scheduled for December 17. Results will be published in a future issue.
Hong Kong: In September 17 voting for the 60-member Legislative Council, the last to be held before the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong is incorporated into the People's Republic of China on 1 July 1997, the Democratic Party headed by Martin Lee dominated the races for the 20 popularly elected local seats. It is expected that, with support from independents...