UN promises neutrality in next week's elections
KABUL (Pajhwok): The United Nations has promised its ‘complete impartiality’ in next week's elections, assuring the war-devastated country of continued assistance.
Speaking to reporters in Kabul late on Thursday, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Hervé Ladsous said some “enemies of democracy” were perpetrating violence to deny the Afghans their right to choose their leaders.
"You all stand against the violence; you make the choice of the ballot box rather than the bullet, and let me tell you that so does the UN," he remarked, voicing satisfaction with preparations for the landmark vote.
Ladsous acknowledged the Independent Election Commission (IEC), together with other Afghan authorities, had appreciably improved the measures to detect irregularities in the polls, slated for April 5.
Election runners themselves should ask supporters to avoid fraud to ensure the vote's credibility,
the UN official suggested, asking candidates to accept the results once they had been announced and endorsed.
Women could play an important role in the elections as voters, candidates and workers, he believed. “As in many other areas, women have a key role to play. Without them there would not be a truly representative and credible vote.”
On a three-day visit to Afghanistan, the top UN official also attended the official ceremony marking Nawroz at the Presidential Palace. He is to meet representatives of the governmental, civil society, as UNAMA and other agencies.
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