Saturday, April 05, 2014

UN envoy congratulates Afghan voters for taking part in 'historic' elections --- 5 April 2014 – As voters across Afghanistan braved inclement weather and security threats to cast their ballots in Saturday's presidential and provincial council elections, the top United Nations official there congratulated them for participating in this “historic moment” for the country. -- “Today was a good day for the future of a stable and unified Afghanistan. Ordinary Afghans turned out to vote in remarkable numbers, defying Taliban attacks and threats,” the Secretary-General's Special Representative for Afghanistan, Ján Kubiš, said in a statement. -- “Often in long queues and bad weather, voters patiently waited to exercise their basic human right to vote. They chose to determine the future direction of the country by political means and resolutely rejected the enemies of peace and democracy,” he added. -- Afghans thronged to polling stations, which opened their doors at 7:00 a.m. today, to cast their ballots for a successor to President Hamid Karzai and members of 34 provincial councils. The polls will result in the first democratic transfer of power from one elected leader to another in the country. -- During a visit to a polling centre in the capital, Kabul, Mr. Kubiš, had voiced the hope that people would come out and vote for their candidates – whoever they may be – in good numbers. “I hope that at the end of the day, we will be able to say this is really a historic moment, opening a totally new chapter for the country.” -- Shukria, a resident of Kabul, expressed her hopes for the country's next leader. “I want my next president to improve security, creating a better environment for us to live in, as well as bring a higher standard of education to the country.” -- According to Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission (IEC), polling took place in 6,212 polling centres across the country, while a further 250 polling centres – that were originally scheduled to be kept open – were closed down due to the failure to dispatch necessary polling materials in light of adverse security developments. - More, UN, at:


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