MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): The Independent Election Commission (IEC) regional office in northern Balkh province has reopened for staff and visitors, officials said on Monday
Two weeks back, supporters of the Grand National Alliance closed down the IEC branch over alleged fraud in the election process.
The protesters demanded the use of the biometric system and guarantees of election transparency.
After an understanding reached between Grand National Alliance representatives and the governor’s office, the IEC office was reopened last night.
Deputy Governor Mohammad Bashir Tawhidi told the protestors the IEC has promised holding transparent parliamentary and district council elections.
He confirmed the protestors’ demands had been met, saying the IEC and the government were trying to use the biometric technology in the upcoming polls.
Syed Qasim Salar, the Grand National Alliance’ regional leader, told Pajhwok Afghan News they had reopened the IEC office after acceptance of their demands.
He added their demands included an increase in the number of observers and using the meteoric system. He warned if the government did not meet their suggestions, they would close again the IEC office.
Provincial police chief Mohammad Akram Sami told Pajhwok the IEC office had been reopened and security measures had been taken.
Police were trying their best to ensure security around election centres that were faced with threats, he concluded.

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