“The Afghan army and police are overwhelmed and underprepared for the transition,” said Rondeaux. “Another botched election and resultant unrest would push them to breaking point.”

The Western-backed government of President Hamid Karzai and the parliament have failed to take any serious steps towards preparing for a clean vote, she said.

“Karzai seems more interested in perpetuating his own power by any means rather than ensuring credibility of the political system and long-term stability in the country.”