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Karzai Is Declared The ‘Winner’ After All

From the Agence France-Pressee:

Karzai declared Afghan vote winner

by Chris Otton

KABUL (AFP) – Election organisers on Monday declared Hamid Karzai Afghan president for a second term, cancelling a one-man presidential run-off following a diplomatic push led by UN chief Ban Ki-moon.

"We declare that Mr Hamid Karzai, who won the majority of votes in the first round, and is the only candidate in the second round, is the elected president of Afghanistan," Indepedent Election Commission chairman Azizullah Ludin said.

Ludin said the decision had been made in line with the provisions of the Afghan electoral law and constitution and "consistent with the high interest of the Afghan people".

The move came one day after the only challenger pulled out and after Ban met Karzai amid a diplomatic push to ensure the one-horse election did not take place and to bring a quick end to more than two months of chaos…

Ban met both Karzai and Abdullah as well as his staff in a show of solidarity for those working in Afghanistan following a deadly Taliban suicide attack on a guest-house for UN staff.

In a press conference, Ban did not say whether he wanted to see the election scrapped but said the United Nations would respect and support the decision of the Independent Elections Commission, the organisers of the ballot.

"The United Nations and the international community will stand together and walk together with the next government and the people of Afghanistan." …

The IEC initially said the run-off would take place as scheduled on Saturday, saying the deadline for Abdullah to withdraw had passed, but a senior official said talks had been convened about scrapping the whole process.

Karzai had opened the door to a possible alternative, saying he would "be obliged to follow" any ruling from the electoral or judicial authorities.

Insistent that first round fraud had been overstated, Karzai only agreed to a run-off under extensive diplomatic pressure.

After the fraud in the first round on August 20, Abdullah demanded Karzai sack Ludin and suspend three cabinet ministers who campaigned for the incumbent — conditions which were stonewalled.

Karzai’s share of the vote in the first round fell to 49.67 percent after around a quarter of all votes were deemed fraudulent.

Abdullah won just over 30 percent and would have had a mountain to climb to overhaul Karzai.

Isn’t it odd how Mr. Obama seemed to be more at peace with the outcome of the Iranian elections than with those in Afghanistan?

Still, it would seem that the Obama administration’s efforts to defeat or weaken Mr. Karzai failed completely. They could not even force a power-sharing deal on him.

This has got to be great for future US/Afghanistan relations.

But what do we need them for?

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, November 2nd, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Karzai Is Declared The ‘Winner’ After All”

  1. Confucius says:

    Okay, great.

    Will Obama decide on troop levels now?

  2. canary says:

    Karzai is friends with Iran, so that means Obama is friends with Iran’s AhMadMan. Obama has never hid his relationship with his VBBF.

  3. Liberals Demise says:

    More knuckle dragging will ensue ……… must be tee time!

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