More Afghan polling stations to remain shut

More Afghan polling stations to remain shut

 
The state electoral commission said 81 of the 458 polling stations planned in Nangarhar province will remain shut during the Sept 18 parliamentary elections “due to deteriorating security conditions.” The tense eastern province bordering Pakistan is a centre of Taliban insurgency, with many militants entering the country from safe havens across the border.

Election officials had earlier announced that more than 900 other polling stations would remain shut because of security concerns and that 5,897 voting sites would be opened throughout Afghanistan.

The government and its foreign partners hope the elections will help consolidate the country’s shaky democracy and political stability, allowing the withdrawal of the roughly 1,40,000 Nato-led foreign troops in the country. But many Afghans and international observers fear the vote could turn bloody after the Taliban vowed Sunday to attack polling places.

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