Abdullah Abdullah

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Afghanistan Swears in New President

Ghani Ahmadzai in, Karzai out in first post-Taliban transfer of power

(Newser) - Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai was sworn in today as Afghanistan's new president, replacing Hamid Karzai in the country's first democratic transfer of power since the 2001 US-led invasion toppled the Taliban. Moments after Ghani Ahmadzai took the oath, he swore in his election challenger, Abdullah Abdullah, as chief executive,...

At Last, Afghanistan Has a New President

Ashraf Ghani will step up after power-sharing deal reached

(Newser) - Afghanistan's election commission has named Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai as the winner of the country's presidential election, but the commission did not release final vote figures. The commission's announcement today came hours after Ghani Ahmadzai signed a power sharing agreement with opponent Abdullah Abdullah, who will fill the...

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...

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...

Afghan Election Chief Resigns
 Afghan Election 
 Chief Resigns 

Afghan Election Chief Resigns

Zia ul-Haq Amarkhail says he wasn't involved in alleged fraud

(Newser) - Afghanistan's chief electoral officer resigned today in a bid to resolve a political crisis over allegations of massive fraud in the runoff presidential vote earlier this month. Zia ul-Haq Amarkhail told reporters that he denies any involvement in fraud but he is stepping down "for the national interest....

Taliban Cuts Fingers Off Voters
 Taliban Cuts Fingers Off Voters 

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...

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...

Karzai's Not So Bad— By Afghan Standards
Karzai's Not So Bad—
By Afghan Standards

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...

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."...

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...

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,...

Runoff Canceled; Karzai Named Victor
 Runoff Canceled; 
 Karzai Named Victor 


Runoff Canceled; Karzai Named Victor

Second term a done deal after opponent dropped out

(Newser) - Afghanistan's Karzai-appointed Independent Election Commission proclaimed President Hamid Karzai the victor of the war-ravaged nation's tumultuous ballot today, canceling a planned runoff two and a half months after a fraud-marred first round. The news came a day after his challenger, Abdullah Abdullah, dropped out of the runoff, and hours after...

Karzai, US Stuck With Each Other
 Karzai, US Stuck 
 With Each Other 

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...

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...

Abdullah Pulls Out of Runoff
 Pulls Out 
 of Runoff 


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...

Karzai Challenger Plans to Call for Boycott

But spokesman leaves room for late maneuvering

(Newser) - Afghan presidential challenger Abdullah Abdullah plans to boycott next week's runoff against Hamid Karzai and instead call for postponement of the vote until the spring, his campaign manager said today. "As of now," Abdullah plans to call for a boycott during a press conference tomorrow, he said. Abdullah...

Karzai Foe Set to Pull Out of Afghan Runoff

Talks have broken down between Abdullah, president

(Newser) - Talks between Afghan President Hamid Karzai and challenger Abdullah Abdullah have broken down, and Abdullah is likely to pull out of next week's presidential runoff, a person with knowledge of the talks said today. An announcement could come as early as Saturday but more likely Sunday, the person said.

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....

Karzai Nixes Power-Sharing Government
 Karzai Nixes 

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...

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...

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