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Live Blog: Afghanistan Presidential Election 2014


10:21 5.4.2014
Blast Injures four voters, one critically

Reuters reports that a blast at a polling station in southeast Afghanistan has injured four voters. The blast, in a school building in Logar province, occurred a few hours after voting began.
10:26 5.4.2014
Three hours in there's been one reported blast, but otherwise the vote has so far been peaceful as Afghans wait in long lines to vote.
10:37 5.4.2014
Here's a round up of event so far:

-Afghan President Hamid Karzai cast his ballot at 8 am local time, just an hour after polls opened around the country. He urged Afghans to “defy the rain, the cold, and the enemies of Afghanistan” and vote to “determine their destinies.” It is the first time in Afghanistan’s history that a sitting president has voted to elect his successor.

-Most of the polling stations in Kabul opened on time. Thousands of Kabulis have already braved rain, long lines, and the threat of possible militant attacks to vote. Huge lines are being reported outside polling stations in the capital. Election officials are expecting as many as 8 million Afghans to vote, which would be unprecedented.

- Many SMS services have been blocked by authorities until 4 pm local time, when most polling stations will close. Reasons given include an order to stop election day campaigning, preventing the Taliban from sending attack messages, and limiting use of mobile phones to detonate IEDs.

-There has already been one major incident of attempted vote-rigging. The Afghan Ministry of Interior says police and officers working for the National Directorate of Security, the country’s spy agency, in Syedabad, Wardak province, were arrested for stuffing five ballot boxes. There have also been unconfirmed reports of ballot stuffing in Faryab and Khost Provinces.
10:55 5.4.2014
The founder of the Afghan Voice media company has some strong words about today's vote and what it means for Afghanistan's future.
11:01 5.4.2014
Mazar-e Sharif, the country's fourth-largest city, is in Afghanistan's northeast. Frud Bezhan just spoke to our correspondent in the city, who has this to report.
11:06 5.4.2014
In a move nominally meant to prevent fraud and ballot stuffing, each polling station is limited to 600 ballots.
11:09 5.4.2014
BBC's Pashto TV bureau chief. Konar is located in Afghanistan's southeast, on the border with Pakistan. The Twitter account managed by the Interior Ministry's office responded almost immediately to the accuation of ballot stuffing.
11:36 5.4.2014
1000s of police, soldiers, plainclothed intel officers in Kabul. Checkpoints everywhere, snipers on rooftops, troops armed w/ RP grenades -- Frud Bezhan
11:46 5.4.2014
Security update: Taliban attacks reported in Ghazni, Khost, Kandahar, Faryab, and Samangan provinces. No casualties reported. Explosion kills 3 in Zabul Province, near Pakistan border -- Frud Bezhan
11:47 5.4.2014
A voter in Ghazni province, in Eastern Afghanistan, tells our Afghan Service: "We are voting to determine the future of Afghanistan. We vote so we will have a better future and a good president who will serve the country. "

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