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PRESS STATEMENT: UNAMA congratulates Afghans on elections

KABUL, 5 April 2014 – The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) congratulates the men and women of Afghanistan on the country's Presidential and Provincial Council elections today. By their actions they have enabled Afghanistan’s first democratic transition from one elected President to another.

"Today was a good day for the future of a stable and unified Afghanistan. Ordinary Afghans turned out to vote in remarkable numbers, defying Taliban attacks and threats. Often in long queues and bad weather, voters patiently waited to exercise their basic human right to vote. They chose to determine the future direction of the country by political means and resolutely rejected the enemies of peace and democracy,” said the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan and head of UNAMA, Ján Kubiš.

“Afghan electoral and security institutions should be commended for their leadership in organizing and securing these elections on time and according to constitutional provisions,” Mr. Kubiš added.

Afghan electoral management bodies now have a critical responsibility to count the votes and resolve complaints fairly and efficiently, and release the results in a transparent and timely manner.

“I call on them to ensure their actions and decision-making are undertaken with the utmost integrity, impartiality and transparency,” Mr. Kubiš said.

The UN official also urged candidates and their supporters to show patience when problems arise by directing their complaints to the appropriate institutions under Afghanistan’s laws, and that the final decisions of these institutions be respected. He warned that premature announcements will only undermine this historic political transition process and its democratic, peaceful character.

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