AFGHANISTAN: Taliban threaten to cut off noses and ears of anyone who dares to vote

The latest threats issued by the Taliban to disrupt the presidential election include “suicide attacks against polling stations” and cutting off “noses and ears of those who vote.”

Equally attacks have been stepped up against the military but especially the civilian population. “We are using new tactics targeting election centres,” Taliban spokesman Qari Yousuf Ahmadi said.

Some 6,500 polling stations will be in operation on Election Day. The number of registered voters is up, 16.7 million (41 percent women) against 12 million in the previous election in 2004. Some 36 candidates are running for president, including two women.

The country’s 34 provincial councils are also being renewed. About 3,324 candidates are running; 342 of these are women. In 2005 they were 3,200, including 286 women. ASIA NEWS

“He gagged her, bound her feet and hands, then hung her upside down from the ceiling as he beat her with a wooden ax handle. He traded his ax for a razor, then cut off the lower lobes of her ears and sliced her nose at the base. He next used a metal rod to poke out her eyes and then put his finger inside each socket to make sure nothing was left.”