Under Pressure, Afghans Pledge Results Within Day

By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2009 6:34 PM CDT
UN special envoy to Afghanistan Kai Eide, right, speaks during a press conference at the Electoral Complaints Commission in Kabul today.   (AP Photo)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – With the leading opposition candidate further hinting at election fraud, and international observers not exactly disagreeing, officials in Afghanistan say they’ll release preliminary results tomorrow from last week’s voting. But even that could raise tensions, the Los Angeles Times reports, as Abdullah Abdullah claims there’s no way President Hamid Karzai could have gotten the more than 50% he’d need to avoid a runoff.

“There’s no doubt that there have been irregularities during polling,” the UN’s top representative in Afghanistan said today. One government body, appointed by Karzai, has said fraud complaints have been neither numerous nor serious enough to substantially change the tally—a claim at odds with one by an election-complaints commission that some of the abuses it had been told about could change the outcome if proven true.