Security lottery of the Afghan poll

Tomorrow is decision time for the people of Afghanistan, as the people of the war-torn country go to the polls. And to be honest the prospect of the elections going smoothly has never been more remote.We’ve already heard of harrowing threats against female candidates wanting to take part. They face a double-edged sword. They have to deal with attacks from the Taleban, and when they do report their fears the security forces simply don’t want to know.One women candidate took the details of a threat to the police only to be told that if she wanted to run then she deserved to be harassed! Another, after being shot, asked for protection, but has yet to receive any.It’s all nothing short of ridiculous – and outlined in full on our website.But it’s not just female candidates that are under threat. Since July, at least three election candidates and 15 campaign workers have been murdered, and dozens of others injured in failed assassination attempts. And just this morning, the BBC reported that two more candidates have been kidnapped by the Taleban along with 18 election officials.And then of course there’s the electorate themselves. The Taleban have been distributing leaflets to local mosques threatening anyone who decides to take part. The Independent was among one of today’s papers that’s covering the concerns in depth.That is of course if you even get the chance to vote. At the start of the month, the Independent Election Commission, which is overseeing the poll, said around one in seven of the polling centres across the country will not open due to security concerns.The Telegraph offers a brief ray of hope with their story that security is apparently being ramped up, but sadly it could all prove to be too little to late.

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