The Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) was formed in November 1997 to promote and support democratization in Asia at the national and regional levels. It has since established itself as the foremost NGO working for democratic elections in the region.
ANFREL is an international, multi-sector, independent and non-political alliance of like-minded organizations working together to advance a common vision: that every State should have a government whose authority derives from the will of the people as expressed by secret ballot in genuine free and fair elections held at regular intervals on the basis of universal and equal suffrage. We strongly believe in the principles enshrined in Article 25 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).
Our objectives are defined in the ANFREL Constitution as follows: “ANFREL shall support participating members’ initiatives on:
1. Election monitoring of the entire electoral cycle;
2. Training on election monitoring, voters’ education and other election-related processes;
3. Development of training manuals;
4. Research on election laws, electoral reforms and other election-related issues;
5. Information dissemination and publication of materials related to elections and democratic processes;
6. Creation of an environment conducive to conducting democratic elections in the spirit of international solidarity.”
ANFREL’s main efforts are focused on conducting international election observation missions, developing capacity building programs for electoral stakeholders such as domestic election observer groups, media, and other civil society organizations working for democratization in their home countries, and undertaking campaign and advocacy activities to address electoral challenges and related issues encountered in the development of democracy in Asia. These three areas of work support and complement one another to further our mission of improving the quality of elections across Asia.
Today, ANFREL counts 27 member organizations hailing from 17 different countries.