RealNews

Attacks Raise Fresh Doubts Over Afghan Elections

A spate of deadly attacks has cast fresh doubts over Afghanistan’s ambitious plan to hold its first ever free elections in June, fueling fears they will be hijacked by Islamic militants and strongmen. Political analysts say President Hamid Karzai is under pressure from his backers in Washington to hold the vote as soon as possible, so it can be touted as a foreign policy victory by President Bush as he seeks re-election in November. But the consequences could be seriously damaging for Afghanistan, they warn. “It is far too soon,” said Ahmed Rashid, an Afghan expert based in Pakistan. “I think they should be postponed for at least a year, perhaps until Spring 2005.” Full Story

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