Female candidates reluctant to enter electioneering
HERAT CITY (PAN): Female provincial council candidates on Tuesday said they could not travel to districts fearing attacks on them if they plunged into electioneering in western Herat province.
They said women were often attacked in Herat City by militants and unknown gunmen, accusing police of releasing individuals after their arrests on charges of insurgent activities.
A candidate Gulsum Saddiqi told Pajhwok Afghan News if security forces failed to improve security in districts, their election campaign would be limited to Herat City only. The security situation in districts has a direct impact on the security in Herat City, she said.
Another candidate, Jahantab Taheri, also said she could not travel to districts and remote parts due to security concerns.
But Herat police chief Brig. Gen. Abdul Hamid Hamidi said tighten security measures had been put in place to protect candidates during their election campaign.
Provincial Independent Election Commission (IEC) office spokesman Tariq Arin declined to comment in this regard.
Herat City residents said security of female candidates should be ensured during electioneering.
A Herat University student, Zubair Habibi, said in most areas, the security situation was not stable and both male and female candidates did not feel safe to travel to districts as part of election campaign.
As many as 166 individuals, including 20 women, are in the run for the 21-seat provincial council office.
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