Afghanistan's Presidential Run-off Election Proves Successful

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On Saturday, June 14th, Afghanistan held its first ever presidential run-off election on schedule, which represents yet another significant milestone achieved by the Afghan government and people. Over seven million voters cast their ballots on Election Day, and 38% of the votes were cast by women. Preliminary results of the runoff election will be announced on July 2, and final results on July 22. During this time, partial counts will also be reported in a timely and consistent manner.

In order to improve the outcome of the run-off, the IEC executed measures to increase voter accessibility to polling facilities, improve their professional capacity, mitigate fraud, and increase transparency. As a result, more than 96% (6,184) of the 6,365 polling centers planned were opened, and voters proceeded to vote without any major issues. According to the Ministry of Defense, face-to-face attacks by militants decreased 37% from the first round. The Afghan National Security Forces played a critical role this month in ensuring a stable environment for Afghans to get out their vote.

The success of this year's election is also a result of Afghanistan's growing media sector. A significant increase in the use of social media enabled more young Afghans to engage in political discussions and track progress in this year's elections. Their reporting was instrumental not just in reporting our successes, but also in pointing out the challenges in the first round in order to improve the run-off.

This year, the people of Afghanistan will experience the first democratic transition of power in their country's history thanks to their courageous commitment to supporting the democratic process. Those brave men and women who stood against oppressive violence and instead cast their ballots are the true leaders moving our country forward towards a more stable and prosperous future.

Afghanistan’s historic transfer of executive leadership from one presidential administration to another is due in large part to the generous support and commitment from the international community, including the United States of America.

Both presidential front-runners are in support of sustaining the U.S. and Afghanistan’s strategic partnership by signing the Bilateral Security Agreement shortly after taking office.