More than 130 people were killed or injured in violence in several parts of Afghanistan during voting for the parliamentary elections on Saturday, AFP reported. The Taliban had warned people against participating in the elections.
At least four people died and 78 were injured in multiple explosions in Kabul alone, acting Health Ministry spokesman Mohibullah Zeer told the news agency. In Kunduz, three people died and 39 were injured after more than 20 rockets attacked the city. Seven people were wounded in a blast in Nangarhar, and at least 11 police officials died in Ghor. More than 30 incidents of violent attacks were recorded in the country, Reuters reported.
An employee of the Independent Election Commission was killed after the Taliban attacked a polling centre near Kunduz and destroyed ballot boxes.
Authorities said they would extend voting till Sunday at 360 polling centres. Apart from violence, the centres also faced difficulties managing voter registration lists and biometric verification devices, and there were allegations of chaotic arrangements and corruption. The Interior Ministry announced the deployment of 20,000 additional troops to the existing 50,000 National Security Forces assigned to maintain law and order.
The Independent Election Commission said 8.8 million Afghans are registered to vote. Earlier in the day, Wasima Badghisy, a commission member, called the voters “very, very brave”. Ten candidates were among several killed in attacks in the run-up to the elections.
The government had postponed elections in the province of Kandahar after an attack on top officials.