Candidates withdraw Afghan vote boycott

Several opposition candidates in Afghanistan's presidential election who had previously called for a boycott of the election results have softened their position. Rather than supporting a new election as was called for on Saturday, they are now requesting an investigation into irregularities and fraud. The main source of the fraud allegations stem from the ink used to mark voters fingers after casting a ballot. The ink, which should not have washed off, was easily removed, raising concerns that multiple votes could be cast by the same person. The independent Free and Fair Elections Foundation of Afghanistan (FEFA), which monitored the polling stations, said in a statement that the elections were "fairly democratic" and security was "better than expected." Observers from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) also issued a statement Sunday saying that

Based on reports from our own teams as well as information provided by the European Union election experts, domestic monitors and delegations from a number of countries, we concur with the Joint Election Management Body that the candidates' demand to nullify the election is unjustified. Such action would also put into question the expressed will of millions of Afghan citizens who came out to vote, carried out voter registration and manned the polling stations despite great personal risk.
Read their full statement here. The UN has described voter turnout in the elections as "massive." BBC News has more.

 

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