Afghanistan to hold parliamentary elections in May

Afghanistan to hold parl

The chief officer of Afghanistan's elections commission said Saturday a parliamentary vote will be held in May despite widespread international concern that the country's electoral system needs serious reform. Ali Najafi told a news conference the national vote will be held May 22. However, he said Afghanistan needs about $50 million from the international community to meet the election's estimated budget of $120 million. It was not clear whether the vote would or could be held if donor countries don't provide the money. In the wake of last August's heavily disputed presidential election, many critics have pushed President Hamid Karzai and his government to delay the parliamentary vote. Karzai has insisted the constitution, which specifies the elections be held by May, must be observed.
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