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US supports biometric votes

AT News Report

KABUL: The United States says it supports only the biometric votes’ credibility in the Afghan presidential elections, said a senior US official in Kabul.

Alice Wells, the US State Department Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, said Wednesday that her country welcomes and supports the plan made by the Afghan independent election commission over validating the biometric votes and rejecting the non-biometric ballots.

She emphasized on the independence of the electoral bodies, saying that they (election commissions) need to serve without political interferences and pressures.

The independent election commission and the independent electoral complaint commission recently announced that only the biometric votes of the September 28th presidential election are valid for them and they would not count the non-biometric votes.

But, one of contenders Rahmatollah Nabil accused the government of referring the non-biometric votes to the Supreme Court for legitimacy.

Wells who met with President Ghani and other government officials as well as some presidential candidates, said that all political leaders assured her of respecting decisions made by the election commissions and that the crisis of the past presidential competitions would not be repeated.

She urged transparency in the election results, calling the contenders to respect electoral norms and principles and avoid any predictions and prejudgments on the results.

A source in the commission said that the primary results of the election planned to be announced on October 19th, would be announced with a delay.

Wells also asked the electoral commissions to provide details on biometric and the real turnout before announcing the primary results.

Wells said that she asked Afghan leaders to accelerate counter corruption campaigns.

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