Taliban fighters in Afghanistan have threatened attacks on voters and poll stations to enforce a boycott of the country’s landmark presidential elections scheduled for August 20, say media reports.
The threats made in leaflets, pinned up and dropped in villages in southern Afghanistan.
Confirming the threats a Taliban spokesman later said, the insurgents would step-up attacks on the eve of polls.
“This is to inform respected residents that you must not participate in the elections so as not to become a victim of our operations, because we will use new tactics,” said one leaflet distributed in Kandahar city.
The letter, written by a top Taliban commander, said voters would be considered enemies of Islam.
It threatened attacks and vendetta against anyone, renting out property to voting centres, even after elections.
17 million Afghans are scheduled to ballot-in their choice for the country’s highest office, only for the second time in the country’s history, on Thursday.
420 provincial councillors will also be elected in the polls which have been clouded by insecurity and logistic headaches.
Qari Yousuf Ahmadi, a Taliban spokesman confirmed the leaflets were authentic and that commanders were ordering the masses to boycott the vote, said AFP.
He said that the Taliban will “accelerate activities on election day and the day before.”