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IU-Kokomo Professor to Monitor Ukraine Election

Protestors in Kiev hold a European Union flag. The protests originally erupted to show support for stronger ties with the EU.

Indiana University-Kokomo’s vice chancellor heads to Ukraine on Monday as part of a team monitoring the troubled country’s upcoming presidential election.

Kathy Parkison got involved in election monitoring through the U.S. Agency for International Development.  She’s monitored six elections in former Soviet Republics, including Ukraine’s last presidential election.

“The last time the election was very well done,” Parkison said.  “There were no problems in our area.  And in general, OSCE declared it to be a fine election.  This time around? Yeah, it could be very interesting.”

Parkison and her fellow monitors will be looking for any irregularities, like voter fraud or voter intimidation.  While monitors only have the authority to file a report, Parkison says such reports have caused elections to be thrown out.

Protests in Ukraine that began in January led to President Viktor Yanukoych feeling the country.  Since then a provisional government has been set up, and a southeastern portion of the country, Crimea, has been annexed and become part of the Russian Federation.

The election will take place  May 25.

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