Afghan election challenger allows recount

Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah, leaves after addressing the media following a conference with his party members and few candidates in Kabul. (AP)

Afghan presidential challenger Abdullah Abdullah on Friday ended his opposition to a recount in seven provinces after the September 28 election, which has been mired in fraud allegations.

The vote results have been repeatedly delayed – officially due to technical problems – as the incumbent, President Ashraf Ghani, and Abdullah wrangle for power.

Abdullah had refused to allow the recount in seven northern provinces, demanding that the electoral commission first invalidate about 300,000 “fraudulent” ballots out of a total of 1.8 million.

But on Friday, Abdullah, who currently serves as the country’s chief executive, said the recount could go ahead -- potentially ending one obstacle to results finally being released.

“I call on the dignified people of Afghanistan to let the recount take place in seven provinces (out of a total of 34),” he told a press conference.

“Today the conflict and problem is between fraud and transparency -- one side committed fraud and the other side wants transparency.”

Last Update: 20:41 KSA 23:41 - GMT 20:41