“The best solution for the current situation is the announcement of final results. The international community has shown readiness to support the results,” Ghani said. Ghani was declared the winner in preliminary results from the June 14 run-off ballot with 56 percent of the vote, giving him a lead of some 1.2 million votes. But his rival, former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah, charged that massive fraud of more than two million votes had denied him victory, and on Monday he said he would reject the outcome if the audit did not throw out enough ballots to make him president. The United States brokered a deal between the feuding parties to form a unity government that would include the new position of chief executive, who would enjoy significant powers despite losing the election. The aim of the deal was to prevent the dispute from descending into street demonstrations and possible ethnic conflict.
Further instability in a country already wracked by a bloody insurgency would provide new openings for Taliban militants, with thousands of foreign troops scheduled to withdraw at the end of the year leaving security in the hands of newly trained Afghan forces.
Talks over exactly how the unity government would work have broken down, with Ghani’s camp saying that Abdullah had insisted that the chief executive had powers almost equal to those of the president.
The new position was part of a compromise brokered by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry as Abdullah’s supporters began taking to the streets, raising fears of widespread violence.
In that agreement, both sides agreed to accept the results of the U.N.-monitored fraud audit.