Police: Top Afghan Election Official Arrested

Preliminary Results Delayed as Fraud Evidence Mounts

Afghan police today confirmed the arrest of Khost Province election chief Shahzada Hassan, who was detained over massive fraud complaints within his restive border province. The Independent Election Commission (IEC) says they have evidence he was involved in fraud.

Khost governor Abdul Jabbar Naeemi went one step further, directly accusing Hassan of taking bribes in return for appointing election monitors who were supporters and relatives of local candidates in last month’s parliamentary vote.

Incredibly enough, Hassan has denied being arrested at all, and claims that he is merely staying at the police guesthouse for “security reasons.” It seems this will be a difficult claim to push when even the police are saying he is under arrest.

Despite a turnout which was much lower than expected, officials also announced that the preliminary results, which were initially supposed to be released on Saturday, will be delayed until at least the end of the month, because there are simply too many allegations of fraud to investigate in the time allotted.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.