Country Risk

Decline in political stability expected following Afghan presidential contest as unifying victor unlikely

20 March 2014

Key Points

  • Presidential elections will be held in Afghanistan on 5 April.
  • President Hamid Karzai's term bar means that there will be a new president for the first time since the United States-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, who will oversee the end of the international mission in the country.
  • If the former Northern Alliance-led opposition perceives the electoral process to be tainted, there will be serious questions about the ability of the Kabul government to enforce its writ in the alliance's strongholds, such as Herat and Balkh.


The outcome of the 5 April presidential election will have significant implications for political instability in Afghanistan and the country's security outlook.

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