Thursday marked Afghanistan's second-ever presidential election. At least 26 people were killed in scattered attacks, but overall the threat of violence did not keep people from voting. Preliminary numbers show that voter turnout was about 40-50 percent. That's not as good at the 70 percent voter turnout in the 2004 elections, but still good considering the threats and violence.
What remains to be seen is how the results will play out. Both of the main candidates are claiming a victory at this point. Many fear that voters of the losing candidate will dispute the results as being fraudulent and start riots. Officials are warning candidates to help keep tensions down.
Preliminary results should be announced Saturday night, though official results are not due for about two weeks.
Also, here is an interesting video done by Democracy International showing what they did to keep the voting and results from being tampered with.
For more information and updates as the election results move forward here are some links for you:
- Brookings Institute's Afghanistan page has plenty of new information that gets updated regularly.
- Election Guide's Afghanistan page - provided by IFES, an international nonprofit group dedicated to the building of democratic societies. They are one of the best sources of online updates for the election.