Karzai Calls for Calm as Election Protests Grow

Urges Protesters to Submit Complaints Legally

As protests against the results of the Afghan parliamentary election grow and expand to additions parts of the country, President Hamid Karzai has urged calm, and has asked for protesters to submit their complaints through legal channels instead of violence.

Reports have over 1,500 people, including seven candidates, blocking the main highway in the Kunduz Province over the election results, released yesterday. Protests have also been reported in a number of other provinces across the nation.

Between the violence and intimidation and the ballot stuffing, large portions of Afghanistan were left either unable to vote or with their votes thrown out as fraudulent, and with virtually every province subject to some irregularities, the Electoral Complaints Commission was in the position to basically select candidates by process of elimination.

Officials are still investigating the huge numbers of complaints related to the election, and the Afghan Attorney General’s office complained that they thought it was inappropriate to release results while the probes are still ongoing. Though some arrests have been made, it seems virtually impossible for any remedy to convince people that the current vote is anything resembling credible.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.