Abdullah Abdullah

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Karzai Cousin Killed: Bomber Shook His Hand, Detonated

Ashmat Khlil Karzai was also politician in his own right

(Newser) - Three years after Afghan President Hamid Karzai's half-brother was assassinated—and a weeping Karzai climbed into his grave —a suicide bomber has killed Karzai's cousin, an official says. According to a rep for Kandahar province's governor, the attacker shook hands with Ashmat Khlil Karzai near the... More »

Apparent Loser of Afghan Election Claims Victory

Crisis could break country apart

(Newser) - Preliminary vote tallies show Abdullah Abdullah losing Afghanistan's presidential election to Ashraf Ghani by a pretty wide margin of 56.4% to 43.5%. But Abdullah declared victory anyway yesterday, and said he would decide in the next few days whether to form a "parallel government" competing with... More »

Taliban Cuts Fingers Off Voters

Attacks kill dozens as voters defy threats

(Newser) - Voting in this weekend's presidential run-off poll in Afghanistan was "relatively peaceful," the BBC reports—but in Afghanistan, "relatively peaceful" can include Taliban attacks that killed more than 50 voters and mutilated nearly a dozen more. To prevent fraud, Afghans are required to dip a finger... More »

Karzai Sworn In, Vows to Fight Corruption

Afghan prez promises to take over country's security in 5 years

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai vowed to fight corruption today after he was sworn in to a second 5-year term as president of Afghanistan. Karzai, whose election victory was tainted by widespread allegations of vote-rigging, said his government would learn from "our mistakes and shortcomings of the last eight years." The... More »

Karzai's Not So Bad— By Afghan Standards

Blame NATO missteps, not corruption

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai's no saint but he's much better than Mullah Omar, civil war, or the murderous Soviet stooges that ruled Afghanistan for many years, writes Bret Stephens. It has become fashionable among "neo-neo-cons" who have suddenly discovered the virtues of good governance to slam Karzai's tainted administration, but history... More »

Afghan Governor Rejects Karzai Election

Dispute could spark fresh fighting in northern province

(Newser) - A powerful warlord-turned-governor's rejection of Hamid Karzai's election victory is raising fears that one of Afghanistan's most stable provinces could collapse into fighting. Atta Mohammed Noor—the only one of Afghanistan's 34 governors to have openly supported Karzai's rival, Abdullah Abdullah—has denounced Karzai as an "unlawful president."... More »

Karzai Promises Change; Taliban Disses 'Puppet'

Insurgent 'brothers' reject the Afghan president's call for unity

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai made some sweeping but non-specific promises to banish corruption and reach out to opponents today in his first press conference since being re-elected by default. The Afghan president also reached out to "Taliban brothers," urging them to "embrace their land," but his overtures were... More »

Obama Calls for New Afghan Chapter

Karzai congratulated, told to clean up his government

(Newser) - President Obama congratulated Hamid Karzai on his "messy" election victory yesterday while warning him that it was time to clean up corruption in his government. "I emphasized that this has to be a point in time in which we begin to write a new chapter," said Obama,... More »

Karzai, US Stuck With Each Other

Afghan prez must act quickly to restore legitimacy

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai is suddenly the only game in town after Abdullah Abdullah’s withdrawal from a runoff election, and the Obama administration must figure out how to restore legitimacy to the Afghan president’s government and extend his influence outside of Kabul. It's critical that Karzai wins back the support... More »

Jarrett: Abdullah Quitting Isn't a Complication

Says election up to Afghan gov't; Obama decision may be delayed

(Newser) - Senior White House adviser Valerie Jarrett says Abdullah Abdullah's withdrawal from next weekend's runoff election in Afghanistan won't complicate the White House's decision-making process on a war strategy. But Jarrett tells George Stephanopoulos that the president's decision could slide back to late November. “The President will make a decision... More »

Abdullah Pulls Out of Runoff

Cites Karzai's refusal to reform election system

(Newser) - The only contender to unseat Afghan President Hamid Karzai today followed through on his threat to boycott the runoff election slated for Nov. 7. Citing Karzai's refusal to overhaul the election system as impetus for his decision, Abdullah Abdullah declared a “transparent election is not possible” at a news... More »

Karzai's Rival May Boycott Runoff Vote

Abdullah demands overhaul of Afghan election commission

(Newser) - Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s strongest political challenger may boycott next month's planned runoff election if the country’s election commission is not completely purged of Karzai supporters. Abdullah Abdullah has consistently charged that without a commission overhaul the vote-rigging which marred the original election is bound to be repeated.... More »

Karzai Nixes Power-Sharing Government

Abdullah says result will be same without new election officials

(Newser) - Both candidates for Afghanistan's presidency focused on the Nov. 7 runoff yesterday, with Hamid Karzai declaring that there would be no power-sharing government, while challenger Abdullah Abdullah voiced concern that without the ouster of top election officials, the tainted outcome would be no different. "So long as these people... More »

UN to Sack Half of Afghan Election Officials

Ban Ki-Moon plans measures to ensure widespread fraud isn't repeated

(Newser) - The United Nations learned "quite a painful lesson" from the widespread fraud in Afghanistan's August election, and aims to rout out corrupt voting supervisors next time around, Ban Ki-Moon said yesterday. The UN secretary-general said more than half of the election officials should be removed before next month's runoff... More »

Karzai Took Major Arm-Twisting to OK Runoff

Round 2 of Afghan election no panacea, either

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai's concession yesterday that an election runoff was necessary may have brought Afghanistan back from political paralysis, but another ballot is no sure solution. The potential for fraud—more than a quarter of first round ballots were thrown out—has not abated, the New York Times notes. Today Abdullah... More »

Karzai Challenger Rejects Plan to Share Power

Abdullah wants interim government: 'Karzai's term is over'

(Newser) - Abdullah Abdullah, who came in second in the first round of Afghanistan's presidential election, is calling for an interim government to take over the country if it's too difficult or dangerous to organize a runoff in the coming weeks. The challenger to Hamid Karzai also rejected suggestions of a power-sharing... More »

Karzai Accepts UN Recount, Runoff Looms

Runoff election looms as prez bows to pressure

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai will bow to international pressure and accept the results of a UN-backed recount of Afghanistan's presidential election, US and European officials tell the New York Times. The incumbent will publicly acknowledge he fell short of 50% of the first-round vote as early as today, setting the stage for... More »

Karzai Allies Get Tough on Recount

Afghan president's team blasts UN-backed election body

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai's camp is signaling he may not accept the results of a recount from Afghanistan's presidential election, sowing further doubt about the country's future. A spokesman said the recount process had been "politically manipulated," and Karzai allies spent the weekend criticizing the UN-backed electoral commission that is... More »

Afghan Election Now Headed for Runoff

'Stunning' second ballot complicates Obama strategy

(Newser) - President Hamid Karzai's share of the vote in Afghanistan's presidential election has reportedly fallen to about 47% after an investigation into fraudulent ballots—meaning that he will face Abdullah Abdullah in a runoff if the result is finalized today. One Afghan official called the development "stunning," and a... More »

Afghan Vote's True Winner: The Taliban

Chaos and corruption aid insurgents' propaganda campaign

(Newser) - It's still not evident whether Hamid Karzai will avoid a runoff in Afghanistan's presidential vote, but the winner of the election is clear: the Taliban. Delays in tallying and alleged systemic fraud have given the insurgency new material for a sophisticated propaganda campaign that portrays the Karzai administration as corrupt... More »

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