Afghan election audit to take three weeks

KABUL: The audit of Afghanistan’s disputed presidential poll will take three weeks, the head of the country’s election commission said on Sunday after the two rival candidates agreed to the vote-checking.
“In order for this audit to be conducted on time, the Independent Election Commission is planning to form 100 teams that will review 1,000 ballot boxes every day. The audit will end in three weeks,” commission chairman Yusuf Nuristani told a press conference in Kabul.
The estimate comes after presidential rivals Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani agreed to an audit of all eight million votes cast in the disputed run-off election, following two days of intense shuttle diplomacy by US Secretary of State John Kerry.
Nuristani said the audit results “should be accepted by both presidential candidates as agreed” and that the check would be conducted in the presence of representatives from both sides and national and international observers. Shortly after the second round run-off on June 14, Abdullah claimed massive fraud had robbed him of victory and boycotted the process by withdrawing his team’s observers. 

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