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Poll workers killed in North blast

At least 11 people, including election workers, have been killed in Afghanistan’s north when a roadside bomb blew up their bus, according to a local official. The governor of the northern province of Samangan told the Reuters news agency that the blast came on Saturday evening, after polls closed in a second-round, run-off vote to elect a successor to President Hamid Karzai. Four of the victims were employe ...

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US: AFGHAN VOTE STEP FORWARD ON `DEMOCRATIC PATH’

The White House says Afghanistan's second round of presidential voting marks a major step forward on the country's "democratic path." In a written statement, the White House praises "the courage and resolve" of the Afghan people in making their voices heard in choosing a new leader. Official preliminary results are expected to be announced July 2. The candidates are a former foreign minister, Abdullah Abdul ...

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Afghans ignore Taliban threats and vote again in final test

KABUL - Polls closed on Saturday after a mostly peaceful run-off to elect a successor to President Hamid Karzai, a decisive test of the country's ambitions to transfer power democratically for the first time in its tumultuous history. As most foreign troops leave by the end of 2014, whoever takes over from Karzai will inherit a troubled country plagued by an increasingly assertive Taliban insurgency and an ...

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President Karzai Casts Vote In Presidential Election Run-Off

Afghanistan's outgoing President Hamid Karzai on Saturday morning cast his vote in the presidential election run-off. Afghans will be electing a new president for the next five years in the first transfer of power in the country's history. Karzai along with other high-ranking officials arrived at Amani High School near the presidential palace at around 7:45 a.m. local time. Karzai, who is constitutionally b ...

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Saturday Vote a Defining Moment for a Fractured Afghanistan

Saturday’s presidential election represents a new era for Afghanistan. The Afghan people will head to the polls for a run-off election to decide the country’s next president. In April, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, a former foreign minister led former finance minister, Ashraf Ghani, by 13 points in a first round vote featuring 16 candidates. No candidate met the 50 percent threshold resulting in the upcoming head- ...

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Commit to the Electoral Principles

The campaign period ended officially and the voters have two days to ponder over their preferred candidate for the country’s presidency. Before the Election Day, many international and national including election monitoring agencies and the United Nations have asked the two candidates to accept the outcome of the Saturday’s election. And the candidates have pledged to commit to democratic principles and pla ...

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Next Afghan President to Tackle Ailing Economy

More than three decades of continued conflict in Afghanistan has taken a toll politically, socially and psychologically. But the greatest damage may have been inflicted on the country’s economy. By 2001, agricultural production had been disrupted, local manufacturing had come to a halt, and basic infrastructure was destroyed largely because of the Taliban government. Since 2001 and the U.S.-led invasion, th ...

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The Looming Runoff Election Day

Afghans have only three days to go to polling stations in a very crucial election. The 14 June election is supposed to be the first peaceful transfer of power in Afghanistan at a time when foreign troops are withdrawing from the country. In the few next days, Afghans have the right opportunity to help leading the country into a new phase. As all Afghans are concerned with the future of the country, the Satu ...

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The High Stake for the Runoff Election

Officials at the Defense Ministry announced say the level of security threats for the second round of elections will be higher than the first round of the elections as the militant groups are determined to disrupt the runoff elections due to be held on 14 June. On Monday, Ministry of Defense spokesman Zahir Azimi said that there are intelligence that the militants are planning to intensify their attacks on ...

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Afghan forces able to secure runoff vote: Azimi

KABUL: Reports indicated attacks from anti-state elements and insurgents backed by regional intelligence networks would increase in the lead-up to and on the polling day scheduled for June 14, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said on Monday. Meanwhile, MoD spokesperson Gen. Zahir Azimi told reporters in Kabul the first round of elections had been a vital experience for security forces, especially the Afghan Na ...

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The Final Phase of Electoral Power Brokerage

Qayum Karzai, President Karzai’s brother and presidential candidate before he supported Zalmay Rassoul in the first round of elections, endorsed Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai in the ongoing presidential race. His endorsement of Ahmadzai is probably coming as the last major coalition-making for the upcoming elections. In fact, it completes the pre-election political dealings from the two contenders of the election w ...

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Boost Presidential Candidates’ Security

The Friday’s suicide bomb attack on the convoy of the leading presidential candidate, Abdullah Abdullah, was the most serious alarm over security of the presidential election. The attack have once again raised concerns and pinned attentions to the high security threats from the militant groups for the second round of the elections. In reaction to the suicide attack on his convoy, Abdullah tried to tell his ...

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Afghan presidential candidate escapes assassination attempt

The front-runner for the Afghan presidency narrowly escaped assassination Friday when two bombs struck his convoy as it traveled between campaign events in the capital, underscoring the country’s fragility as it prepares for its first democratic transfer of power and the withdrawal of foreign combat troops by the end of this year. The candidate, Abdullah Abdullah, was unharmed and defiantly vowed to press a ...

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The Future of Afghanistan: Is It The Great Puzzle?‏

The current elections and the buzz around 2014 deadline of US for Afghanistan raised tensions of Afghan people more than ever before. Almost all my friends are approaching me in Facebook and Twitter for my viewpoints on the given topics. Elections went to second round as I and many others predicted. I am sharing the reason why I thought it would happen so. Afghanistan is a country of minorities. No ethnic g ...

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Syrians Vote In Presidential Poll

Syrians are voting in a presidential election which the incumbent Bashar al-Assad is widely expected to win. Voting is only taking place in government-controlled territories, meaning those displaced by fighting or living in rebel-held areas will not be able to take part. The opposition has dismissed the vote as a "farce" that will prolong the country's three-year conflict. The vote excludes regime opponents ...

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Egypt Voting Extended Amid Poor Turnout

Egyptians have been given an extra day to cast their ballots in the country's presidential election, after two days of low voter numbers at polling booths. Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, Egypt's former army chief who quit in March to run for president, is expected to easily win, but his campaign had hoped for a large turnout as a decisive show of support. On Wednesday, there was little sign that the number of voters ...

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Airlifting Of Election Material Demanded

FAIZABAD: The Independent Election Commission (IEC) on Wednesday said it was difficult transferring election materials to some districts of northeastern Badakhshan province without air support from security forces. IEC Director Mohammad Rasoul Umar said the delivery of sensitive election material to 14 districts had already been completed but roads to 14 mountainous districts were covered with snow, hamperi ...

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Senior Afghan Officials Accused Of Electoral Fraud

The Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan (IEC) said Tuesday that a number of senior government officials were involved in electoral fraud in the first round of election. IEC officials said the list of senior government officials involved in electoral fraud has been sent to the President Palace. The officials urged the government of Afghanistan to dismiss the officials involved in electoral fraud. ...

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Voter turnout low in Egypt elections

Low voter turnout has been reported on the second and final day of Egyptian presidential elections, as former army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sisi is expected to emerge as the country's next president. While the Egyptian government declared a national holiday for Tuesday in an effort to get voters to cast their ballots, an official with international monitoring group Global Network for Rights and Development rep ...

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A Third Option for US Engagement in Afghanistan

US President Barack Obama is deliberating over a third option for American military presence in Afghanistan: to leave about 10,000 troops for two years and withdrawing completely after 2016. This is while the day before Obama told American forces at Bagram airfield that the United States will continue supporting the people of Afghanistan. This is completely in contrast to the recommendations of American mil ...

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