Published: Wed, February 19, 2020
Global News | By Blake Casey

Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani re-elected after five-month delay in results

Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani re-elected after five-month delay in results

President Ashraf Ghani on Tuesday was declared the victor of Afghanistan's presidential vote after five months of delayed results and bitter dispute.

Polls were held on September 28 to select a president for the fourth time since USA -led forces overthrew the Taliban government in 2001.

The results of the election had been delayed for almost five months after Mr Ghani's rival, Abdullah Abdullah dismissed the results as fraudulent and forced a recount.

In a news conference announcing the election result after an audit of about 15 percent of the total vote, the chief of Afghanistan's election commission, Hawa Alam Nuristani, said that Ghani had won with the narrowest of margins - 50.64 percent of the vote, just surpassing the 50 percent minimum required for an outright victory with no runoff. Abdullah Abdullah, the Chief Executive of Afghanistan, came second with 39.51% of the votes.

But Mr Abdullah said he and his allies had won the election and would form their own government.

"About the details of the reduction in violence, on how to implement it, the Afghan security forces are working in close collaboration with the USA partners", he said.

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Molly Phee, who is Khalilzad's deputy, told an event at the U.S. Institute of Peace think tank that the Ghani-Abdullah dispute "likely. could add to the many challenges that Afghanistan faces, including the challenges associated with the peace process".

"I asked those who believe in democracy, in a healthy future for this country, in citizens' rights to stand up to fraud and to not accept this fraudulent result", Abdullah said.

The Taliban group strongly reacted to re-election of Ashraf Ghani as the President of Afghanistan, calling the election process as "fake and unlawful".

The relationship has since been marred by distrust and a jostling for power in Kabul. Both rejected the initial results. The RIV also would cover Afghan forces.

She said: "May God help him in serving the people of Afghanistan".

The agreement is set to pave the way for crucial intra-Afghan talks between the political leadership and the Taliban. They say they will only talk to Afghan authorities after a deal with the USA is agreed.

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