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Friday, 08 August 2014 16:40

Rival Afghan candidates sign unity government deal

Rival presidential candidates in Afghanistan, Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani, have agreed to form a national unity government.

 

According to Press TV, the announcement was made on Friday by candidate Abdullah Abdullah at a press conference following a two-day meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry.

However, the joint declaration signed by both opponents, Abdullah and Ghani, failed to provide details on the government's framework. It only said both sides will form a commission to work on its structure.

Kerry met with the country's two presidential candidates, former foreign minister, Abdullah Abdullah, and former finance minister, Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, on Thursday night.

The talks were aimed at preventing the country from going deeper into political chaos after the disputed election in Afghanistan.

Following the June 15 runoff election, Ghani, a former World Bank economist, won the Afghan election with 56.44 percent of the votes, while Abdullah came second with 43.56 percent.

Abdullah rejected the initial results as unacceptable and fraudulent, alleging that he was the victim of “industrial-scale” ballot-box stuffing, with many more votes than the voters registered in some areas.

Later on, both candidates agreed to an internationally monitored audit and pledged to stand by the eventual result of the audit. However, the audit process was halted on several occasions due to differences between observers of the two presidential teams on how to disqualify votes.

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