Chairman, ISAF Chief Salute Afghans for Securing Elections
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, April 5, 2014 Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, and Marine Corps Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., the commander of the International Security Assistance Force, congratulated the people of Afghanistan on their historic election today, and also saluted the Afghan security forces for their efforts to make the elections happen.
"Today there is reason for celebration in Afghanistan,” Dempsey said in a statement. “Millions turned out to vote, with Afghan National Security Forces looking out for the safety of Afghan people as they cast votes at more than 6,000 polling sites. Clearly, this is an important step in the first democratic transfer of power in Afghanistan’s history.
“But today's election did not come without significant sacrifice -- the sacrifice of the Afghan people and many Americans and service members from partner nations who have been killed and wounded fighting there since 2001,” the chairman continued. “We look forward to the outcome of the elections and the opportunity to continue to work together, with a willing partner, for a better Afghanistan."
The Afghan people “can be proud of their security forces. For months, they’ve conducted planning and security operations to ensure that the conditions were set for inclusive elections,” Dunford said in an ISAF news release issued today.
As the world watched, Afghan National Security Forces provided the opportunity for the Afghan people to choose their new president, securing over 6,200 polling centers across the country, the ISAF release said.
Soldiers and policemen confidently patrolled the cities and countryside to protect innocent civilians and prevent insurgents from disrupting today’s elections, the ISAF release said, and Afghan voters displayed confidence in their army and police, turning out in unprecedented numbers to cast their ballot for the future of Afghanistan.
“What we saw today as a result of that effort was extraordinary,” Dunford said in the release. “In addition to their physical performance, what equally impresses me is the sense of responsibility and determination they had in ensuring the Afghan people had a secure environment in which to vote and determine their own future.
“ISAF stands committed to continuing the strong partnership with our Afghan brothers and sisters,” the ISAF commander continued. “We have forged this relationship for more than a decade, and the ANSF achievements today are enormous; their brave and heroic actions demonstrate their dedication to a secure, stable and unified Afghanistan.”
Today’s success clearly demonstrates that the Afghan people have chosen their future of progress and opportunity, the ISAF release said.