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TH!NK ABOUT IT - european blogging competition 2009 » Blog Archive » Expat voting and why I am still a foreigner in European Elections

For anyone interested in the European elections voting procedure when living abroad read on. As an expat, returning `back home' to vote in person in national elections is not always possible. Time and money being the main constrains. Voting in person for the upcoming EP elections in this sense, is no different. So, in a seemingly no fuss way, I will be sending my vote by post. Signed, sealed, delivered. Simple!

To verify that there would be no slip-ups however, I thought I would double-check the procedures. A look on the EP website gave no easy answer regarding dates I would need to register by etc (no surprises there). So, I thought I would call my friendly EP representation office in Athens. I was happy they were genuinely polite even if they were unhelpful (anyone who has had any dealings with the Greek public services will understand why I was happy). I did wonder if they had had any calls recently, who uses the EP representation offices anyway? I can't really understand why a whole team of staff is needed here, as well as in Brussels. Anyway, they told me to call the British embassy in Athens to check on the procedure for British citizens wishing to vote in EP elections. 

by Fran on Thu Apr 30th, 2009 at 03:26:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I left a comment:

"voting in European Parliament elections when I am a European citizen should mean I can add my name to an electoral register in the European country I reside in, and have a residence permit to be in"

In principle, that's what it does mean. Citizenship of the EU as defined by the Maastricht Treaty includes the right to vote in one's country of residence in both municipal and EP elections. A British national, I have voted in both, in France, since Maastricht came into effect (1993), simply by registering at the local town hall.

All member states are signatories to Maastricht and should enable any EU citizen to register to vote locally. Whether all countries do so willingly and efficiently is of course another matter...

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Apr 30th, 2009 at 04:29:23 PM EST
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