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Afghans voting to elect president Karzai's successor

Today Afghan voters will elect president Karzai’s successor in the second round of Afghanistan’s presidential elections. It will be the first transfer of power from one elected leader to another in Afghan history.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Martin Lidegaard states:

”The first round of the presidential election on April 5 went well. The Taliban will do its utmost to scare the Afghan voters away from the polls as shown by the recent attempted assassination attack on one of the presidential candidates. As many as 6.9 million Afghans participated in the first round of elections despite threats from the Taliban. I hope that, once again, we will be impressed by the Afghan voters and see an Afghan population contributing actively to influence the future of their country”.

Minister for Trade and Development Cooperation Mogens Jensen states:

”A peaceful political transition in Afghanistan is an important step towards continued development in Afghanistan. With support from Denmark and many others, Afghanistan has experienced significant progress since 2011, not least in terms of education and women’s rights. For me, the fact that one third of the votes in the first round of the presidential elections were cast by Afghan women is a strong testimony of how far Afghanistan has come”. 

None of the eight presidential candidates obtained more than 50 percent of the vote in the first round. Thus, today the Afghan voters will choose between one of the two leading candidates from the first round, who will then become Afghanistan’s new president. The front runners are Abdullah Abdullah, who is a doctor by trade and former Afghan Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Ashraf Ghani, a former World Bank economist and Afghan Minister of Finance.

The preliminary result of the presidential election is expected on 2 July and the final result on 22 July. Afghanistan’s new president is expected to be inaugurated in August.

The election process is led by Afghan electoral institutions with international support from the UN, the OSCE and the EU. Denmark has supported the deployment of up to 10,000 national election observers during the election. Denmark has also provided 28 million in support of the efforts to strengthen the capacity of Afghanistan’s electoral institutions. Before the second round of the presidential election, the electoral institutions have addressed several of the technical problems from the first round. The Afghan National Security Forces are responsible for security during the elections with limited support from the international ISAF-mission (International Security Assistance Force).

For more information, please contact:
Marcus Carter Mathiasen, Press Advisor to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, tel.: +4541532567
Poul Kjær, Press Advisor to the Minister for Trade and Development Cooperation, tel.: +4541865975

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