UNSC calls on Afghan elections to meet "highest standards of integrity"

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Shortly before the release of the statement, Afghan ambassador to the UN Mahmoud Saikal told the press that the statement shows the international community's interests in Afghan's holding of free, fair and credible elections and that the Afghan government, political leaders and the Independent Electoral Commission aim to make it happen.

An Afghan man (R) uses his thumb to mark his application at a voter registration center in Ghazni city, capital of Ghazni province, eastern Afghanistan, May 21, 2018. (Xinhua/Sayed Mominzadah)

NITED NATIONS, July 23 (Xinhua) -- The UN Security Council on Monday called on all parties concerned by the upcoming elections in Afghan to uphold the "highest standards of integrity" throughout the "historic process" to ensure its outcome reflects the will of the Afghan people.

In a presidential statement, the council urged speedy completion of outstanding issues regarding the elections, including the approval of candidates to fill critical vacancies within the Independent Election Commission and the Electoral Complaints Commission, the establishment of a central database of all registered voters that identifies irregularities, as well as the publication of a final list of candidates.

Afghan has recently concluded the voter registration process for the elections, which saw more than 8.9 million Afghans register, including more than 3 million women. The country is expected to hold parliamentary and district council elections in October and presidential elections in 2019.

It also emphasized the central role of UNAMA, the UN's political operation in Afghan, in supporting the organization of elections and the strengthening of electoral reform efforts, as well as the need for electoral observation missions to be in place.