Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 9th 2014 Contents A28
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Wednesday, July 9, 2014
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Afghan presidential contender
Abdullah Abdullah has claimed vic-
tory in last month s poll, despite
results giving a lead to his rival,
Addressing supporters in the cap-
ital, Kabul, Abdullah repeated claims
that the election was marred by fraud.
US Secretary of State John Kerry
had earlier warned against a power
grab, amid reports that Abdullah was
planning a "parallel government".
People at the venue where Abdullah
Abdullah spoke to his supporters were
angry. A crowd tore down a poster of
outgoing President Hamid Karzai
chanting: "Death to Karzai. Long Live
They are appalled at the election
results. They believe that massive
fraud has happened while President
Karzai, the election commission and
Ashraf Ghani stood by.
So the Abdullah camp have decided
to take things into their own hands
and he appears to have some support.
Several influential figures---governors,
district leaders, mayors, and war-
lords---have come out in his favour.
But Afghanistan is a divided coun-
try---Ghani and Abdullah both com-
mand a lot of support.
Analysts will be very worried. They
know that what has been suggest-
ed---a parallel government---could
affect Afghanistan s stability, economy,
security and its relations with the
international community. The army
across the country is such a divided
force that it is difficult to know how
it might respond. Everybody recog-
nises this has the making of an elec-
Abdullah told the gathering in Kabul
that he would never "accept a fraud-
"We are the winners of this round
of elections, without any doubt," he
said, to cheers from the crowd.
However, he stopped short of
declaring a parallel government as his
supporters had earlier suggested he
might. Instead, he called for a unified
"We don t want civil war, we don t
want a crisis," he said. "We want sta-
bility, national unity, not division."
Preliminary results announced on
Monday gave Ghani 56.44 per cent
of votes in the 14 June run-off.
Abdullah, who fell just short of an
outright majority in the first round,
had 43.56 per cent.
Both men have alleged fraud in the
election. Votes are being re-checked
at more than 7,000 polling stations---
nearly a third of the total number.
yesterday not to hand
over a group of asylum
seekers to the Sri Lankan
three days notice amid
a court challenge and
uproar from human
The government s
pledge came during a
High Court hearing held
one day after Australia s
confirmed that another
boatload of asylum seek-
ers had been intercepted
by Australian border
patrol and handed to Sri
Lankan authorities in a
transfer at sea last month.
Refugee advocates and
human rights agencies
argued that the asylum
seekers could face perse-
cution in their home
some of the Sri Lankan
asylum seekers on the
latest intercepted boat
went to the High Court
to stop the 153 people on
board from also being
returned to their home
They are currently
being held on an Aus-
tralian customs vessel.
The issue erupted
Monday after Immigra-
tion Minister Scott Mor-
rison confirmed that
Australian border patrol
had intercepted a boat
carrying 41 Sri Lankans
off the Cocos Islands in
the Indian Ocean in late
June and handed them
over to the Sri Lankan
government on Sunday.
Sri Lanka has arrested
at least 4,300 people try-
ing to migrate to Australia
since 2009, according to
the Sri Lankan navy. (AP)
Sri Lankan asylum seekers sent back by Australia outside the magistrate's court
in Galle, yesterday.
Sri Lankans win temporary
reprieve from Australia
claims Afghan victory
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