Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah
quit an election run-off on Sunday after accusing the government of not meeting
his demands for a fair vote, leaving a cloud over the legitimacy of the next
A weakened Afghan government under President Hamid Karzai would also be a blow
for U.S. President Barack Obama as he decides whether to send up to 40,000 more
U.S. troops to fight a resurgent Taliban in Afghanistan.
Election officials said hours later that the November 7 vote would go ahead with
both names on ballot papers but with Karzai as the only candidate.
“Based on election laws and based on the constitution there should be a second
round. The constitution is clear,” Daoud Ali Najafi, chief electoral officer
of the government-appointed Independent Election Commission, told Reuters.
However, a spokesman for U.N. mission chief Kai Eide voiced doubt about the practicality
of carrying on with the election.
Click here to read more about Abdullah Abdullah’s
withdrawal has on the Afghan election.