ParliamentaryElections2020/ Start vote abroad; first polling station has been opened in Aucklan, New Zealand

Voting in the Senate and Chamber of Deputies elections of December 5 and 6, 2020, began on Friday at 8 pm, Romania's time, once with the opening of the polling station in Auckland, New Zealand, informed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAE), in a press release. At 10.00 pm, Romania's time, there will also be opened the polling stations organized in Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney, to be followed by the polling stations in Adelaide (10.30 pm, Romanian's time) and Brisbane (11.00 pm, Romania's time). The first day of voting abroad will continue with the opening of the polling stations in Seoul and Tokyo (12.00 am, Romania's time), Perth, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Beijing, Manila, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore (1.00 am, Romania's time). Given the time zone differences, voting abroad takes place over 59 hours, with Auckland being the first polling station to open, and the polling stations in the western United States (Los Angeles, Anaheim, Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Altos, Las Vegas, Portland and Seattle) and Canada (Vancouver) to be the last. The latter ones will also close the last, on Monday, December 7, at 7.00 am, Romania's time. Romanian citizens domiciled or residing abroad can vote in the 2020 parliamentary elections at any of the 748 polling stations organized abroad, on Saturday and Sunday. Polling stations are open between 7.00 and 9.00 (local time), with the possibility of extending the voting until 11.59 pm, at the latest, in cases where there are still voters who at 9.00 pm are at the polling station or are in a row outside the polling station. Romanian citizens who have their domicile abroad can vote on the basis of one of the following documents: simple passport, mentioning the country of residence, temporary simple passport, mentioning the country of residence, simple electronic passport, mentioning the country of residence. Romanian citizens residing abroad can exercise their right to vote at the polling stations abroad with a Romanian identity document (identity card, electronic identity card, temporary identity card, diplomatic passport, electronic diplomatic passport, official passport, electronic official passport, simple passport, simple electronic passport, temporary simple passport), accompanied by a document issued by the authorities of the state of residence proving the legal right to stay abroad for a period longer than 90 days. Romanian citizens residing abroad can present the documents proving the residence abroad issued by the foreign authorities both in original and in copy, as well as in electronic format. Romanian citizens domiciled or residing abroad can exercise their right to vote even if the Romanian identity documents or issued by the listed foreign authorities expired between March 1 and December 6, 2020, these being considered valid. The MAE recommends to Romanian voters abroad who want to exercise their right to vote at the polling stations to use both days to vote, to avoid possible crowding. At the same time, the MAE strongly recommends the observance of the health protection measures applicable to the polling stations abroad and of the measures adopted by the authorities of the state of domicile/residence in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, including while going to/leaving the polling station. The measures that must be observed by the voters during the voting at the polling stations abroad are: wearing a protective mask in such a way as to cover both the nose and the mouth; disinfection of hands at the entrance and exit of the polling station; maintaining a distance of at least 1 metre from other voters and members of the polling station, including while waiting in line to enter the polling station; avoiding, when presenting the identity documents, taking over the stamp and the ballot papers, taking them without disinfecting the hands beforehand; avoiding direct contact with other participants in the electoral process. Romanian voters abroad have at their disposal a telephone line for obtaining useful information on the organization and conduct of the parliamentary elections abroad: 0040214312065. The telephone line, with a normal charge, is permanently available between December 3, 2020, 08.00 am - December 7, 2020, 8.00 pm. AGERPRES (RO - editor: Mariana Ionescu, EN - author: Cristina Zaharia)

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