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Afghanistan's Top Electoral Official Resigns

Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani
Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani

Afghanistan's top electoral official has resigned, in a move that could complicate efforts to organize parliamentary elections for later this year.

Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani, the head of the Independent Election Commission (IEC), stepped down on March 26.

A spokesman for the IEC said he had resigned in the "national interest."

President Afghan Ghani accepted his resignation.

Nuristani had repeatedly accused the government of meddling in the electoral process.

He was in charge of organizing the 2014 presidential election, the country's first democratic transfer of power, which descended into near-chaos when both Ghani and his rival, Abdullah Abdullah claimed victory.

Abdullah's supporters have long sought Nuristani's ouster, and his resignation might be seen as a concession to them.

Parliamentary elections have been scheduled for October 15.

Based on reporting by Reuters and dpa