Karzai promises `national unity’ government in new termNovember 3rd, 2009 - 5:14 pm ICT by IANS
Kabul, Nov 3 (DPA) Afghan President Hamid Karzai promised Tuesday to assemble a government of “national unity”, a day after the presidential runoff was cancelled and he was declared the winner.
His new cabinet would include representatives from all of Afghanistan’s ethnic groups and political camps, Karzai said in Kabul.
The president left open whether the new administration would include the man he was to have faced in Saturday’s runoff, Abdullah Abdullah.
Karzai’s one-time foreign minister came in second after Karzai in the Aug 20 election but withdrew Sunday from the runoff, alleging that it, like the first round of voting, would not be fair.
The August election was marred by massive fraud, mostly in favour of Karzai. A UN-backed investigation discounted about one million ballots, or one-third of Karzai’s votes, forcing him into the runoff.
But with Abdullah’s withdrawal, the Afghan Independent Election Commission Monday called off the runoff and declared Karzai the winner. However, the method of Karzai’s re-election to a new five-year term cast doubts over the legitimacy of his new government.
He said Tuesday that he would make fighting corruption, for which is government has long been criticised, a priority.
A day earlier, US President Barack Obama urged Karzai to begin a “new chapter” for his country by initiating reforms and cracking down on graft.
Obama telephoned Karzai after he was declared the election winner to offer congratulations but also to urge him to get serious about improving the government, fighting corruption and speeding up the training of Afghan security forces.
“The proof is not going to be in words; it’s going to be in deeds,” Obama said at a meeting with Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt.
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- US pressured Karzai to accept runoff pol - Oct 21, 2009
- Karzai's challenger expected to boycott presidential run-off - Oct 31, 2009
- Decision to name Karzai president had no legal basis: Abdullah - Nov 04, 2009
- Abdullah boycotts Afghan presidential runoff election (Lead) - Nov 01, 2009
- US expects Karzai to accept Afghan runoff: Report - Oct 20, 2009
- Karzai ready to accept runoff after election audit - Oct 20, 2009
- Obama welcomes Karzai's move to Afghan run-off election - Oct 21, 2009
- Afghan election watchdog disqualifies 19 over poll fraud - Nov 22, 2010
- Top Afghan election officials, accused of vote-rigging, resign - Apr 07, 2010
- Karzai accepts runoff vote to be held on Nov 7 (Roundup) - Oct 20, 2009
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