- Title: Polls close after relative calm in Afghan presidential election
- Date: 28th September 2019
- Summary: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (SEPTEMBER 28, 2019) (REUTERS) VOTERS BEING REGISTERED BY POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE AT POLLING STATION VOTER DIPPING HER FINGER IN INK VOTERS BEING REGISTERED BY POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE VOTER PLACING FINGER ONTO DEVICE TO REGISTER FINGERPRINT LAST VOTER CASTING VOTE AND LEAVING POLLING STATION WITH HER DAUGHTER AFGHANISTAN INDEPENDENT ELECTION COMMISSION (IEC) LOGO ON BALLOT BOOTH VARIOUS OF POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE COLLECTING ELECTION MATERIALS VARIOUS OF SEAL ON BALLOT BOX BEING UNSEALED BY POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE SEAL ON BALLOT BOX (SOUNDBITE) (Dari) POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE, SEDIQA HOSSAINI, SAYING: "We are at the final stage of our work which is the ballots counting process. We finished the counting of ballots and now we are filling the forms and will hand it to election officials." POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE REMOVING BALLOTS FROM BOX VARIOUS OF BALLOT PAPERS VARIOUS OF POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE COUNTING BALLOTS OBSERVERS WATCHING BALLOT COUNTING (SOUNDBITE) (Dari) POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE, MOHAMMAD YASIN HAMDEL, SAYING: "As you know, we have collected the ballots on a regular basis and there is no violation. We will send these ballots to the election commission (IEC)." POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE PUTTING THE BALLOTS INTO BALLOT BOX BALLOT BOX POLLING STATION EMPLOYEE LOCKING THE BALLOT BOX WITH SEAL OBSERVERS WATCHING BALLOT BOX BEING LOCKED
- Embargoed: 12th October 2019 17:01
- Keywords: Afghanistan polls election
- Location: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN
- City: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN
- Country: Afghanistan
- Topics: Government/Politics,Elections/Voting
- Reuters ID: LVA001AYKLN47
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Counting began on Saturday (September 28) after polling stations closed for Afghanistan's presidential election
Preliminary results are not expected before Oct. 17 and final results not until Nov. 7.
If no candidate gets 51% of the vote, a second-round will be held between the two leading candidates.
Taliban fighters attacked several polling stations across the country to derail the process but intense security measures prevented large-scale violence.
Ten of thousands of Afghans braved the threat of militant attacks and delays at polling booths to vote in the election, a major test of the Western-backed government's ability to protect democracy against Taliban attempts to derail it.
IEC officials did not immediately share the details on turnout, but Western diplomats in Kabul estimated it was low due to fears of violence and delays caused by polling officials.
Voting was extended by two hours, after technical problems delayed the opening of some polling stations around the country.
Saturday's presidential vote is the fourth since the Taliban was toppled.
The hardline Islamist group, which controls more of the country than at any time since its regime fell in 2001, had warned the more than nine million registered voters to stay at home or face dire consequences.
Over a dozen candidates are vying for the presidency, led by incumbent Ashraf Ghani and his former deputy Abdullah Abdullah.
The winner will play a crucial role in the country's quest to end the war with the Taliban and any resumption of talks between the militant Islamist group and the United States, which were called off this month.
(Production: Aziz Mohammad, Hameed Farzad)
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