List of Afghan parliamentary candidates finalized

07:51, June 23, 2010      

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Fazal Ahmad Manawi, the Chief of Afghan Independent Election Commission (IEC), on Tuesday announced the finalized list of Afghanistan's second parliamentary election since the fall of Taliban regime in late 2001.

"Based on the law electoral timeline for upcoming legislative election, today I officially announce the finalized list of Wolesi Jirga or Lower House of parliament contesters which include 2,577 candidates with 405 of them women," Manawi told a press conference in the fortified IEC compound here.

He also said that based on complaints received by Electoral Complaint Commission (ECC) 21 candidates were removed from the list of candidates due to different reasons including having links with illegal arm groups.

According to Manawi 48 other contesters have withdrawn from the race voluntarily while 31 other candidates have been disqualified by IEC during the verification process.

Afghanistan's second legislative polls is scheduled for September 18 this year while security has remained the main challenge for the process in the militancy-hit country as Taliban militants have intensified their activities this year in the post- Taliban Afghanistan.

The aspirants are to secure 249 seats in Afghan Lower House of parliament.

The hardliner militia boycotted last year's presidential elections and attack several poll centers especially in the southern region where is known as stronghold of the outfit.

Source: Xinhua


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