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Afghanistan heads for presidential runoff with no winner in 1st round vote: sources

English.news.cn   2014-05-15 15:49:19

KABUL, May 15 (Xinhua) -- Two leading Afghan presidential candidates, out of eight runners, will vie in a runoff polls in mid-June as no winner emerged in the first round elections held on April 5, according to an election source.

"None of the eight candidates obtained an outright victory in the first round. The runoff will be held in mid-June," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

The final result of the third Afghan presidential election held on April 5 is expected to be announced within hours, he said.

To secure an outright victory, a candidate must win more than 50 percent of valid ballots. Otherwise, the top two candidates will go into a runoff.

"This is the first time in the history when Afghans will experience a runoff poll. The Independent Election Commission (IEC) is ready to launch the polls. All preparation are put in place," an election commissioner, Sarir Ahmad Barmak, told local media earlier.

According to election timetable, the runoff must take place two weeks after the final result is announced. However, the official said due to some problems, the runoff polls will take place on June 14.

In the preliminary results of the April 5 presidential elections, announced by the election commission on April 26, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah secured 44.9 percent of the votes, while Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai won 31.5 percent and Zalmai Rassoul bagged 11.5 percent of some 7 million votes, paving the way for the runoff between front runners Abdullah and Ghani Ahmadzai.

A Couple of days ago, the former foreign minister Rassoul joined Abdullah team and announced his support for Abdullah in the second round of elections.

However, Adbullah says if there is transparency in the vote counting, he will be the winner, while his rival Ghani Ahmadzai has expressed readiness to go for the runoff.

Nearly 7 million Afghans of some 12 million eligible voters cast their ballots in the April 5 elections amid Taliban threat to elect the new leader for the next five years to replace the incumbent President Hamid Karzai.

Editor: Xiang Bo
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