FRAUD ALLEGATIONS SPARK AFGHAN POLL DISPUTE

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KABUL: Afghan election authorities on Monday (Tuesday in Manila) strongly denied top officials were guilty of fraud after front-running presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah unleashed allegations that could threaten a smooth transition of power. Abdullah’s fraud claims put him in direct conflict with the Independent Election Commission (IEC), raising fears of political instability as the bulk of US-led troops withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of the year. Abdullah demanded the sacking of Zia-ul-Haq Amarkhail, head of the IEC secretariat, over Amarkhail’s alleged attempt to remove unused ballots from the IEC headquarters in Kabul on polling day. He also said the IEC’s turnout figure of seven million voters in Saturday’s run-off election was probably false.

AFP

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