Karzai Working on Deals With Challengers

Power-sharing agreement may be in the works
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 16, 2009 4:29 PM CDT
Afghan President Hamid Karzai is seen in Kabul Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2009.   (AP Photo/Ahmad Masood, Pool)
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(Newser) – The Afghanistan election has turned into such a mess that President Hamid Karzai is discussing some kind of partnership with at least two of his challengers, the Wall Street Journal reports. His camp and that of top challenger Abdullah Abdullah are talking through third parties, while Karzai also has reached out to fourth-place finisher Ashraf Ghani.

The news comes as Afghan's election body declared that Karzai won 55% of the final vote—enough to avoid a runoff, in theory—but it will take another month or so to work through all the fraud allegations. Details of the talks between Karzai and the other candidates are scant. But a spokesman for Abdullah says he's willing to enter a power-sharing agreement if Karzai agrees to one that is "serious and substantial."