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Monday, September 22, 2014, 16:35

Ghani named Afghan president-elect

By Reuters

 Ghani named Afghan president-elect

KABUL - Former Afghan finance minister Ashraf Ghani was named president-elect on Sunday after he signed a deal to share power with his opponent, ending months of turmoil over an election that destabilised the country as most foreign troops prepare to leave.

Ghani's administration must now not only forge an effective government after so much acrimony, but also deal an emboldened Taliban-led insurgency that is bringing near-daily attacks across the country.

In announcing the pact, authorities withheld the final election numbers, apparently as part of the political deal between Ghani and rival Abdullah Abdullah, a former foreign minister who claimed the vote was rigged against him.

"The Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan declares Dr Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai as the president of Afghanistan," commission chief Ahmad Yousuf Nuristani said.

Under the terms of the unity deal, Ghani will share power with a chief executive proposed by Abdullah. The two will share control over who leads key institutions such as the army and other executive decisions.

Nuristani acknowledged deep flaws in a June 14 run-off vote and said a UN-supervised audit was not adequate to weed out all vote-rigging. The audit was organised at a cost of US$10 million to be paid with US aid money, according to the United Nations.

Ghani is expected to be sworn in as president on Sept. 29, according to a senior official.

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