EU urges Karzai to allow new Afghan vote if required

Last Updated: Monday, October 19, 2009 - 21:24

Brussels: Afghan President Hamid Karzai must allow a second round of Presidential Election if a fraud enquiry deems the initial vote count invalid, the Swedish EU presidency said no Monday, amid fears that he will refuse.
Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt called on all sides "to fully respect all parts of the agreed procedure that includes the work of the (UN-backed ECC) electoral complaint commission and the independent election commission.

"If these results point towards the need for a second round, a second round must be held," he stressed during a press conference with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in

A European diplomat explained the need for such a call from the European Union.

"We received worrying news that he (Karzai) might not accept a run-off vote," one European diplomat said.

"We want to underline to President Karzai the importance of guaranteeing the credibility and the legitimacy of the future president of Afghanistan," the diplomat said.

Bildt, whose country holds the rotating EU presidency, added that the European Union fully supported the mission of top UN envoy Kai Eide, who has been shuttling between Karzai and his main rival, ex-foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah.

Bureau Report

First Published: Monday, October 19, 2009 - 21:24

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