Error message

On Wednesday April 9, 2014, the U.S. Institute of Peace hosted one of the first public discussions with experts examining the first reports out of the April 5th elections in Afghanistan.

Read the event coverage, Next Steps for Afghanistan

From left to right, Scott Smith, Peter Manikas, Jed Ober, Hamid Arsalan

Presidential and Provincial Council elections in Afghanistan were held on Saturday, April 5, 2014. The campaign has generated widespread enthusiasm among Afghans, and the political stakes are high. Across the country, millions of Afghans cast their ballots in what will be the country’s first democratic transition of power.

On Wednesday morning, April 9th, USIP hosted a group of experts to provide their first impressions and initial analyses. First, Kabul-based experts, led by USIP Country Director Shahmahmood Miakhel offered their opinions from Kabul by videolink. Then a Washington-based panel added their views and took questions from the audience. The Washington-based panel was led by Scott Smith, director for Afghanistan & Central Asia Programs at USIP.

Take the opportunity to gain a well-informed analysis of the elections, how they went, and what they might mean for Afghanistan’s future by watching the event recording below. Join the conversation on Twitter with #USIPAfghanistan.

  • Hamid Arsalan, Discussant
    Program Officer, National Endowment for Democracy
    Washington, D.C.
  • Najla Ayubi, Discussant
    Deputy Country Representative, The Asia Foundation
  • Jed Ober, Discussant
    Director of Programs, Democracy International
    Washington, D.C.
  • Peter Manikas, Discussant
    Senior Associate & Regional Director for Asia Programs, The National Democratic Institute
    Washington, D.C.
  • Shahmahmood Miakhel, Discussant
    Afghanistan Country Director, U.S. Institute of Peace
  • Nader Nadery, Discussant
    Chairman and Founder, Free & Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan
  • Nargis Nehan, Discussant
    Executive Director, Equality for Peace and Democracy
  • Scott Smith, Moderator
    Director, Afghanistan & Central Asia Programs, U.S. Institute of Peace
    Washington, D.C.

Related Publications

Women's Access to Justice in Afghanistan

Women's Access to Justice in Afghanistan

Thursday, July 17, 2014

By: Erica Gaston; Tim Luccaro

Since the fall of the Taliban in 2002, gains in women’s rights and access to justice in Afghanistan have been remarkable, yet women’s rights remain extremely limited. How do women in Afghanistan seek justice when their rights are violated? What barriers do they face in pursuing justice or receiving a fair outcome? This report draws on interviews and focus group discussions held in Afghanistan in 2011 and 2012 to determine answers to these and related questions and to recommend ways forward. ...


Next Steps for Afghanistan

Next Steps for Afghanistan

Thursday, April 24, 2014

By: Emily Horin

“The Afghan people voted for change. Change in life, in educational and employment opportunities, in better governance,” Shahmahmood Miakhel, USIP’s Afghanistan country director and former Afghan Deputy Minister of Interior, said at a USIP event First Impressions of the Afghan Elections on April 9. 

2014 Presidential and Provincial Council Elections in Afghanistan

2014 Presidential and Provincial Council Elections in Afghanistan

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

By: Zekria Barakzai

Success of the upcoming elections in Afghanistan hinges on the independence and effectiveness of electoral institutions, wide voter participation, and a strong antifraud strategy. Recent changes in electoral law pave the way for a legitimate process, but much depends on how well Afghanistan’s electoral commissions can carry out their roles.

Lessons Learned on Traditional Dispute Resolution in Afghanistan

Lessons Learned on Traditional Dispute Resolution in Afghanistan

Thursday, June 27, 2013

By: Erica Gaston; Akbar Sarwari; & Arne Strand

This report analyzes the effectiveness of a series of USIP pilot projects attempting to link the formal justice and governance sectors in Afghanistan with traditional dispute resolution actors. Though such pilot projects often helped support immediate dispute resolution, the broader political dynamics and some cultural and economic challenges to the underlying assumptions of the linkages model frustrated many of the overall project goals.

Mediation, Negotiation & Dialogue

View All Publications