Afghan election campaigning kicks off amid violence, fraud claims

Campaigning for Afghanistan's long-delayed parliamentary elections kicks off Friday, as a crescendo of deadly violence and claims of widespread fraud…

Campaigning for Afghanistan’s long-delayed parliamentary elections kicks off Friday, as a crescendo of deadly violence and claims of widespread fraud fuel debate over whether the vote will go ahead.

More than 2,500 candidates will contest the October 20 poll, which is seen as a test run for next year’s presidential vote and a key milestone ahead of a UN meeting in Geneva where Afghanistan is under pressure to show progress on “democratic processes”.

But preparations for the ballot, which is more than three years late, have been in turmoil for months, despite UN-led efforts to keep Afghan organisers on track.

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