Three killed as bomb destroys Afghan election truck

Sunday 06 April 2014 20.34
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It could take six weeks for results to come in from across Afghanistan's rugged terrain (Pic: EPA)
It could take six weeks for results to come in from across Afghanistan's rugged terrain (Pic: EPA)
Trucks are being used to transport the ballot boxes around Afghanistan (Pic: EPA)
Trucks are being used to transport the ballot boxes around Afghanistan (Pic: EPA)

A roadside bomb hit a truck carrying full ballot boxes in northern Afghanistan, killing three people a day after the country voted for a successor to President Hamid Karzai.

Eight boxes of votes were destroyed in the blast, which came as the three leading candidates voiced concerns about possible fraud.

Around seven million people turned out to vote, according to the Independent Election Commission (IEC), a turnout of over 50% despite poor weather and Taliban threats to target the election.

Sayed Sarwar Hossaini, police spokesman for the province of Kunduz, said the truck was hit as it carried ballot boxes from polling stations to Kunduz city.

"The blast killed three people, including an IEC member, a policeman and a driver. The truck and eight ballot boxes were destroyed," Mr Hossaini said.

Amir Amza Ahmadzai, the head of the IEC in Kunduz, confirmed the incident.

Roadside bombs have been a key weapon for the Taliban in the insurgency they have waged against Mr Karzai's government and its Western backers since being ousted from power in 2001.

In the run-up to the poll the Islamists urged their fighters to target election workers, voters and security forces to disrupt the vote, which they rejected as a foreign plot.

Polling day passed off without major militant attacks, but casualties were reported from small incidents around the country.

Preliminary results are due on 24 April and if no candidate secures more than 50% of the vote, a runoff is planned for late May.

The front-runners are former World Bank economist Ashraf Ghani and former ministers Abdullah Abdullah and Zalmai Rassoul.

Keywords: afghanistan