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Rescue worker transporting the injured and dead to a hospital after a suicide bombing on July 13, 2018, against the Balochistan Awami Party killed at least 130. Photo: Muhammad Arshad/Pacific Press via Getty Images

Violence is increasing ahead of Pakistan's general elections this Wednesday. Throughout July, attacks on political candidates have killed more than 150 people and injured scores more.

Why it matters: Pakistan’s National Counter Terrorism Authority has issued a warning to vulnerable candidates, and the army announced that it will pledge 350,000 security personnel, but the increase in violence still spells trouble for election day. Although the military has stepped in for security purposes, it is also involved in intimidation.

The details:

Candidates from the Pakistan Muslim League–N party have accused the military establishment of targeting the party and working to divide its vote base. The media has also accused the military of meddling to influence the national narrative — and ultimately the election results.

#HerVote, a campaign to encourage women to vote, has been trending online. But women in rural areas remain fearful of voting, and a ban on women voting continues in some locations.

The bottom line: The military’s interference in the elections not only hurts its credibility but also that of Pakistan’s political system. At the end of the day, the ability to vote safely doesn't much matter if the elections are unfair and unfree to begin with.

Sahar Khan is a visiting research fellow in the Cato Institute's Defense and Foreign Policy Department.

Go deeper

A city's catharsis

A view outside the Hennepin County Courthouse after yesterday's verdict. Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Celebration and catharsis filled the streets of Minneapolis yesterday. After weeks on edge, many breathed a sigh of relief upon hearing Judge Peter Cahill read the sweep of guilty verdicts against Derek Chauvin.

What they're saying: "George Floyd isn't coming back to life, but this is the justice we were looking for," Jaqui Howard, who joined the crowds outside the courthouse yesterday, told The Star Tribune.

What to expect from Derek Chauvin's sentencing

Screenshot via CNN

Derek Chauvin was whisked away to prison after after two weeks of testimony and about 10 hours of jury deliberations, but his sentencing will move much slower — about eight weeks.

What's next: There's still plenty of wrangling left over how much time the former Minneapolis cop will spend behind bars.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
2 hours ago - Health

The U.S. is approaching the vaccine hesitancy "tipping point"

Expand chart
Data: CivicScience; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. will probably run out of adults who are enthusiastic about getting vaccinated within the next two to four weeks, according to a KFF analysis published yesterday.

Between the lines: Vaccine hesitancy is rapidly approaching as our main impediment to herd immunity.