Ban satisfied with ballot preparations
KABUL (Pajhwok): The UN chief on Thursday voiced satisfaction with technical and security preparations and broad public engagement for Afghanistan's upcoming presidential and provincial council elections.
“These are extremely important elections for the country,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, urging all Afghan men and women to participate in the vote on 5 April and to take the opportunity to have their say on the future direction of their country.
In a statement, he denounced violence by any group. He specifically condemns statements from the Taliban threatening further attacks on civilian election workers, candidates, observers, voters and polling sites.
Ban reiterated that deliberate attacks against civilians were serious violations of international humanitarian law and that the perpetrators would be held accountable.
He welcomed Afghan ownership of the electoral process, asking government institutions to discharge their responsibility to deliver credible, inclusive and transparent elections.
He also called for the candidates and their supporters to show patience and respect for electoral institutions and processes, while the ballots were counted and complaints adjudicated, and to abide by the results.
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