Afghan troops stepped up security, erecting more checkpoints, searching cars and banning trucks from the streets of the capital Kabul ahead of the presidential elections on Saturday.
The heightened security came after the Taliban issued a new statement warning voters to stay away from the polls.
Afghans were choosing a new president in the runoff election between two candidates who both promise to improve ties with the West, combat corruption and guide the nation with a steadier hand than outgoing leader, Hamid Karzai.
With the insurgency showing no signs of weakening as foreign combat troops prepare to withdraw at the end of the year, the winner will have the task of bolstering Afghanistan's security forces while weighing the possibility of a negotiated peace with the militants.
And he will have to find a way to improve the nation's infrastructure at a time when international aid for Afghanistan is drying up.