Monday, June 29, 2009

Omega lies through its teeth

The Omega news agency has an article posted about the OSCE parliamentary assembly that has just started in Vilnius. In the article, Omega makes the claim that the members of the assembly have received a report on the April 5 elections which states (in terrible, subject-confused Romanian) that "the expression of the will was recognised transparently, democratically and which corresponds to all international standards".

The source document is pages 12-14 of the OSCE PA's 'Background report'. This report unfortunately draws on the OSCE ODIHR election observers' much-criticised preliminary report rather than the much more balanced and well-researched final version. Nonetheless, it appears that Omega didn't even think that this wording was fit for publication without a little doctoring.

The phrase 'expression of the will' is nowhere to be found in the OSCE PA background report (although it did appear in the ODIHR preliminary report). The words 'transparent' and 'democratic' do appear, but not in the context quoted by Omega.

Both reports use the phrase 'corresponds to many international standards' in referring to the election process. Not that senior OSCE staff later clarified that 'many' does not even mean 'most', i.e. the April 5 election only corresponded to a minority of international standards. I don't think the phrase was used at all in the final ODIHR report. Amazingly, however, Omega have taken the liberty of replacing 'many' with 'all' in their reporting, giving the impression that the election process was near perfect even though the final report said it was anything but.

By now I expect the "journalists" at Omega to spin their news reports in favour of the communists. I didn't think they would stoop to fabrication, however.

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