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Thousands Of Complaints Lodged Ahead Of Afghan Vote Deadline

The data entry center of the Independent Election Commission in Kabul
Afghanistan's election watchdog says it has received some 3,000 formal complaints over the country's parliamentary elections.

Ahmad Zia Rafat, one of five commissioners on the UN-backed Electoral Complaints Commission, said the complaints were over irregularities both on polling day on September 18 and in the run-up to the election.

He said the commission was considering giving Afghans two more days to lodge complaints.

Today is the deadline for lodging complaints about irregularities.

Afghan and foreign officials have praised Afghan election officials for holding a vote when insurgent violence is at record levels and after the Taliban threatened to disrupt the vote.

But since voting ended, concern has been mounting over voter turnout and fraud, intimidation, and other irregularities.

Both President Hamid Karzai and the top UN envoy, Staffan de Mistura, have said it is too early to describe the election as a success.

compiled from agency reports