Afghan Election Official Quits Over ‘Foreign Interference’

UN Insists It Still Stands Behind Election Complaints Commission

Maulvi Mustafa Barakzai, one of only two Afghan members of the UN-backed Election Complaints Commission (ECC), resigned today complaining that the foreign members of the panel had been making all the decisions without them.

The UN said it regretted the resignation, but insists that it still has full confidence that the ECC will produce a “fair” outcome in its investigation of the August election, marred by enormous fraud.

The resignation is likely to draw yet more uncomfortable attention to allegations that the UN’s Mission to Afghanistan has been going out of its way to cover up the extent of the fraud by incumbent President Hamid Karzai.

Last week the ECC published in detail the rules it would be following for its recount, which seemed aimed at ensuring that no amount of fraudulent ballots would be enough to force a second round of voting, something UN officials have publicly said they oppose. The ECC’s chairman, Canadian Grant Kippen, insists that the strategy is statistically sound.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.