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18 Feb 2020 | 11:29 PM UTC

Afghanistan: Election-related gathering in Kabul February 19 /update 1

A large-scale event related to the presidential election is expected to take place in Kabul on February 19; increased security presence and traffic disruption reported

security
transportation
AFG

Event

A large-scale event is expected to take place in Kabul on Wednesday, February 19, regarding the recently announced presidential election results. According to local sources, the rally is anticipated to be held around the Loya Jirga Tent and the Intercontinental Hotel in the PD5 area. As of 09:00 (local time) on Wednesday, a heightened security presence and increasing traffic congestion has been reported near the hotel. Clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.

Context

The Independent Election Commission (IEC) announced on Tuesday, February 18, that incumbent President Ashraf Ghani won the September 28 election after securing 50.64 percent of the vote. Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah received 39.52 percent in the recount. The results of the election had been delayed amid allegations of voter fraud and procedural irregularities. Abdullah has rejected the IEC results, claiming that he won the vote and intends to announce the formation of an inclusive government.

Advice

Individuals in Kabul, and Afghanistan more generally, are advised to monitor the situation, avoid public demonstrations, anticipate a heightened security presence, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities.

The security environment in Afghanistan remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.