KABUL (SW) – The United Nations expresses deep concern at the Taliban’s stated threat to target civilians participating in the 28 September presidential election process.
According to international humanitarian and human rights law, the electoral process in Afghanistan is a civilian undertaking and everyone has the right to take part in public affairs, to vote and to be elected to government without discrimination and without unreasonable restrictions. All citizens – whether voters, candidates or election-related staff – have the right to be free from fear, intimidation and violence at all stages of an elections process, UNAMA said on Wednesday.
The United Nations urged the Taliban to respect and protect civilians and not to threaten them or carry out violence should they engage in their constitutional right to participate in elections.
The United Nations emphasizes that attacks directed against polling centers and civilians participating in the electoral process are clear violations of international law, and perpetrators of such crimes must be held accountable.
The Taliban on Tuesday issued stern warnings that people must stay away from election related gatherings and rallies or could become potential targets. In a social media post, the insurgents stressed the citizens must not continually fall for the ‘cunning political traps and refrain from participating in such a process where their votes do not actually hold any value’.