Elections most important event in Afghan this year: US


"The Presidential and the provincial elections are the most important event that will happen in Afghanistan this year. We wish the Afghans well in their election tomorrow. I think, this is an important event in choosing their own leaders," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said at his daily press briefing on Wednesday.

Gibbs said the US will continue to monitor the security situation in the country on the election day. "The President increased our troop commitment, to Afghanistan, based on a belief that the security situation for these elections was tremendously important. We certainly continue to monitor that," he said.

However, Obama Administration's top point man for the region, Richard Holbrooke did not issue any statement on the eve of the elections.

Neither did the US issue the customary congratulatory message to the people of Afghanistan on the occasion of the country's 90th Independence Day yesterday.

Gibbs insisted that the goal of the US is to disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-Qaeda and its extremist allies and said it is important for America's national security, homeland security and for the security of the rest of the world.

Meanwhile, the State Department said the US has been very encouraged by the vigorous debate seen in run up to the polls.

"We have seen thousands of Afghans, despite all the intimidation, come to rallies. We have seen also a number of debates on radio and television. These are very vigorous debates on the issues that are facing the Afghan people," State Department spokesman Ian Kelly said.

"The important thing is that this is the first election in Afghanistan that has been organised by Afghan institutions," Kelly said in response to a question.

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