Obama congratulates Afghans on voting despite Taliban threats
- Afghan women enter a polling station to vote in Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, April 5, 2014. Across Afghanistan, voters turned out in droves Saturday to cast ballots in a crucial presidential election in what promises to be the nation's first democratic transfer of power. The vote will decide who will replace President Hamid Karzai, who is barred constitutionally from seeking a third term. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says Afghanistan's presidential election marks another important milestone.
He says the Afghan people are taking full responsibility for their country as the United States and its allies gradually withdraw their forces.
Obama is congratulating the millions of Afghans who defied threats from the Taliban and went to the polls.
Turnout in some places Saturday was so high that polling places ran out of ballots.
Partial results are expected Sunday.
Obama says the election to choose a successor to President Hamid Karzai is critical to securing Afghanistan's democratic future and continued international support.
Secretary of State John Kerry says the vote demonstrates Afghan people's commitment to protecting and advancing their democracy. He says that the United States remains ready to work with the next president.