At least 100,000 Afghan soldiers monitor the security at polls. Out of 5,000 polling stations, at least 400 cannot function because they are located in areas controlled by the Taliban. Hundreds more closed for security reasons. The scepticism of voters.
Kabul (AsiaNews / Agencies) – Afghanistan’s presidential elections began this morning amidst massive security measures. At least 100,000 Afghan soldiers were deployed, while US air force is offering its support to monitor polling stations.
The election was delayed twice due to insurgent threats. Also for today, the Taliban have promised to hit many polling stations.
Out of a population of 34 million, there are 9.6 million Afghans with voting rights. But many of them will not be able to vote: out of 5 thousand polling stations, at least 400 will not be able to function because they are located in areas controlled by the Taliban. Hundreds more are closed for security reasons.
There are 14 candidates, but the choice focuses mainly on two of them: the current president Ashraf Ghani and his deputy Abdullah Abdullah, who since 2014 have been governing together.
To vote, voters must also overcome a certain skepticism: the two major contenders are known to be corrupt; the electoral round falls after the Taliban interrupted the dialogue with the United States. Last January they reached an agreement that however excluded the government of Kabul, considered inconsistent. This month, due to some terrorist attacks, the dialogue with the US has stopped and this makes the future government even more fragile.