Karzai hails Afghan election results
Last Updated: Wednesday, September 09, 2009, 18:03
  
Kabul: Afghan President Hamid Karzai Wednesday welcomed the partial election results announced by the Independent Elections Commission, ignoring reports of "clear proof" of fraud by a UN-backed commission.

Karzai congratulated Afghan voters for going to the polls despite Taliban intimidation.

"President Karzai applauds the Elections Commission for its efforts in pursuing the process in an impartial and faithful national spirit," a statement issued by the President's Office said.

Karzai praised "the courageous Afghan nation for their broad and free-of-fear participation in the Presidential and Provincial Elections and congratulated them on this great achievement", the statement said.

The election commission Tuesday announced that President Hamid Karzai had achieved an absolute majority of 54.1 percent of the votes in the August 20 Presidential Election, with 92 percent of the polling stations counted.

His main challenger, former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah received 28.3 percent.

However, on the same day the UN-backed independent Election Complaints Commission reported that there was "clear proof" of fraud in the election, and it ordered the IEC to review votes cast in the relevant polling stations.

No official final result may be published before the review is finished. However, the IEC said it would continue the vote count and only afterwards begin its review of the polling stations singled out by the complaints commission's criticism.

IANS


First Published: Wednesday, September 09, 2009, 18:03


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