News / Asia

Afghanistan Deploys Security Forces Nationwide to Secure Polls

Afghanistan Deploys Security Forces Nationwide to Secure Pollsi
X
Sharon Behn
April 02, 2014 9:50 PM
Afghanistan has deployed 300,000 police, army and special forces across the country to secure polling stations for the April 5 presidential and provincial elections. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Kabul on the extraordinary push to improve security as militant attacks continue in an effort to disrupt the ballot.
Sharon Behn
Afghanistan has deployed 300,000 police, army and special forces across the country to secure polling stations for the April 5 presidential and provincial elections.  

The extraordinary push to improve security comes as militant attacks continue in an effort to disrupt the ballot.

Security is tight on the streets of Kabul.  Despite this, militant attacks continue.
 
Ministry of Defense spokesman General Mohammad Zahir Azimi said every effort was being made to safeguard the April 5 elections.

"We cannot say that the enemy will not attack; they will try suicide bomb attacks and bomb blasts in some parts of the country.  But I can tell you we have the ability and capacity to stop them," he said.
 
Tens of thousands of security troops have fanned out across the country.
 
"Our special forces commandos also are now ready across the country, in provinces where they may be needed to respond to emergency situations. We also have special forces ready to conduct night raids," said the spokesman.
 
Yet the large outdoor political rallies have remained relatively unscathed during the election campaign.
 
Instead, militant attacks have focused on police, election officials, local candidates and foreigners.
 
Police are taking the security lead.
 
Kabul's Rapid Reaction force are the police who are called in when there is a bomb blast or gun battle in the city center.  They are also the ones who will be helping secure Kabul for the upcoming presidential elections.
 
Some voters, like Haji Asad, are determined to have a voice in this election.

"We Afghans have to ensure our own security.  And in spite of all the threats, we are still going to the polls," said Asad.

Others, like Haji Qais, are not willing to take the risk.
 
"Only party members will vote, and even they will be scared.  No-one is going to risk their life, we do not have enough security, and if Kabul is not secure, imagine the provinces," said Qais.
 
Security officials, including the country's Air Forces Commander General Mohammed Dawran, are trying their best to re-assure citizens.
 
"Our air forces are at the ready in many provinces, like Kabul, Kandahar, Herat, Mazar, and Helmand.  And we have helicopters on standby across the country to deploy our special forces commandos in case of any emergency," he said.

The Taliban on Wednesday again warned Afghans not to take part in the elections, or risk being killed.
 
Guesthouses and restaurants popular with foreigners and Afghans have already been closed in the capital in expectations of further attacks.

You May Like

US Investors Eye IPO for China's Alibaba

E-commerce giant handled 80 percent of China's online business last year, logging more Internet transactions than US-based Amazon.com and eBay combined More

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

As cease-fire begins, Palestinians celebrate in streets; Israelis remain wary More

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

In treatment of a 12-year-old boy Chinese doctors used a 3-D printer and special software to create an exact replica of vertebra More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implanti
X
August 27, 2014 4:53 PM
A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. VOA News reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Northern California Quake: No Way to Know When Next One Will Hit

A magnitude 6.0 earthquake rocked northern California’s Napa Valley on Sunday. Roads twisted and water mains burst. It was the wine country’s most severe quake in 15 years, and while hospitals treated many people, no one was killed. Arash Arabasadi has more from Washington on what the future may hold for those residents living on a fault line.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Ukraine: Captured Troops Proof of Russian Role in Separatist Fight

Ukrainian officials say they have captured Russian soldiers on Ukrainian territory -- the latest accusation of Moscow's involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the Ukrainian side of the battle, where soldiers are convinced of Russia's role.
Video

Video Rubber May Soon Come From Dandelions

Synthetic rubber has been around for more than a century, but quality tires for cars, trucks and aircraft still need up to 40 percent or more natural rubber content. As the source of natural rubber, the rubber tree, is prone to disease and can be affected by bad weather. So scientists are looking for replacements. And as VOA’s George Putic reports, they may have found one in a ubiquitous weed.
Video

Video Jewish Life in Argentina Reflected in Yiddish Tango

Jewish people from across Europe and Russia have been immigrating to Argentina for hundreds of years. They brought with them dance music that were eventually mixed with Argentine tango. The result is Yiddish tango -- a fusion of melodies and cultural experiences that is still evolving today. Elizabeth Lee reports from the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, where one band is bringing Yiddish tango to an American audience.

AppleAndroid