Afghanistan will lose US aid if prez poll candidates seize power: Kerry
US Secretary of State John Kerry warned on Tuesday that any attempt to seize power in Afghanistan would cost the country its international aid.
Kabul: US Secretary of State John Kerry warned on Tuesday that any attempt to seize power in Afghanistan would cost the country its international aid, after preliminary results of presidential elections sparked a row between the two candidates.
Initial results released on Monday showed former World Bank economist Ashraf Ghani had won the election, but a spokesman for his poll rival Abdullah Abdullah rejected the outcome as "a coup against the will of the people."
Fraud allegations immediately triggered a dispute and stoked concerns of instability after the figures showed Ghani collected 56.4 percent of the run-off vote against ex-foreign minister Abdullah's 43.5 percent.
In a statement, Kerry warned "I have noted reports of protests in Afghanistan and of suggestions of a 'parallel government' with the gravest concern. The United States expects Afghan electoral institutions to conduct a full and thorough review of all reasonable allegations of irregularities."
"Any action to take power by extra-legal means will cost Afghanistan the financial and security support of the United States and the international community," he added.
Turnout on 14 June was more than eight million out of an estimated electorate of 13.5 million, far higher than expected, and a figure likely to fuel fierce arguments about fraud from both sides.
The next president will lead Afghanistan at a pivotal time as US-led troops end their 13-year war against Taliban insurgents, and the fragile economy struggles with declining international aid.
"We can not deny fraud and violations in the process," Independent Election Commission (IEC) head Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani told reporters.
"In some cases some security forces were involved, in other cases senior government officials like governors or lower-level officials were involved."
Nuristani emphasised that the results would now be subject to auditing and adjudication of complaints, before the official result released on about 24 July.
"The preliminary result in no way means the announcement of the winner of the election," he said. "A change in the result is possible."
Last-minute talks delayed the results by nearly five hours yesterday, as the two campaigns tried to thrash out a deal over a proposed fraud probe that could yet derail Afghanistan's first democratic transfer of power.
"The announcement of results was a coup against the will of the people," Mujib Rahman Rahimi, a spokesman for Abdullah, told AFP.
Some of those 'unsolicited tweets' had announced that the Pakistan consulate in Kandhar will be closed for two days in protest against alleged support to the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan - also known as the Pakistan Taliban - by the Taliban government of Afghanistan
Afghanistan are sitting safely in seventh place on the current standings, with the top eight sides at the end of the Super League earning automatic spots.
During a phone call with Pakistan foreign minister Bilwal Bhutto Zardari, Amir Khan Muttaqi also said that the Taliban government of Afghanistan is trying to find the perpetrators of the attack on the Pakistan Embassy and bring them to justice