News / Asia

Bombing Kills 5 During Afghan Runoff Campaign

Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah speaks during a news conference in Kabul, Afghanistan, May 11, 2014.
Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah speaks during a news conference in Kabul, Afghanistan, May 11, 2014.
Ayaz Gul
Authorities say a suicide car bombing in southern Afghanistan killed at least five people and wounded about  40 others, including soldiers.  The violence continues as candidates campaign for the country’s runoff presidial vote.

The deadly attack occurred in Kandahar province, one of the violence-hit southern Afghan regions where Taliban insurgents routinely carry out such attacks.  An Afghan army vehicle was said to be the target of the suicide bombing in which mostly civilians were killed or wounded. 
 
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.
 
Meanwhile, Afghan presidential frontrunner Abdullah Abdullah received a boost to his presidential campaign before a runoff election scheduled for mid June.
 
Former foreign minister Zalmai Rassoul, who finished third in the April 5 election, endorsed Abdullah, saying they will form a coalition.
 
Speaking together in Kabul, Rassoul said “national unity, stability, peace and prosperity” formed basis of his decision to back Abdullah because Afghans are tired of war and discrimination. 
 
“The primary reason” he said to join hands with Abdullah, “is to prevent the election from being decided on regional and ethnic grounds.”  It will also lead Afghanistan to political stability, he added. 
 
Rassoul was widely seen as a favorite of incumbent President Hamid Karzai, who was unable to participate because of constitutional limits.

Abdullah praised the decision of his former rival, describing it as an important step to promote national unity. 
 
He said Sunday’s decision must have disappointed “enemies of Afghanistan” who want to see the country remain trapped in an ethnic crisis.
 
Rassoul comes from Afghanistan’s royal family and draws support largely from the majority Pashtun Afghans, who view Abdullah as a leader of ethnic Tajik community because of his mixed family background. 
 
But election observers believe that contrary to traditional practices, Abdullah drew support from Pashtun voters that put him on top of the list of presidential hopefuls in the first round.  Another former presidential candidate, Gul Agha Shirzai, once governor of Pashtun-dominated Kandahar province, has already endorsed Abdullah.
 
Abdullah got 45 percent of the vote in the first round while his nearest rival, former finance minister Ashraf Ghani, a Pashtun Afghan, finished at 32 percent.
 
Election authorities will declare the final results of the April 5 presidential polls on Wednesday May 14.
 
A candidate has to garner at least 50 percent of the vote to win the election in the first round.  The decisive second-round between Abdullah and Ghani was to be held two weeks after the announcement of final results, but election authorities have already delayed it until mid June.

You May Like

Beijing Warns Hong Kong Protesters, Cracks Down at Home

In suppressing protest news, China reportedly has arrested more than 20 people on the mainland who acted in support of Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters More

Competing Goals Could Frustrate Efforts to Fight Islamic State

As alliances shift and countries re-define themselves, analysts say long-standing goals of some key players in Middle East may soon compete with Western goals More

Child Sexual Exploitation to Worsen in SE Asia

Southeast Asia’s planned economic integration is a key step for boosting the region’s productivity, but carries downsides as well More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Haron from: Afghanistan
May 12, 2014 3:03 AM
we hope as soon as possible the first round should be clear who win and got %50+1 votes of people. because, we face with most of problems nowadays and we wish a new president take the responsibilities of our country in first round of election. if the election goes to second round due lack of votes. the second round or runoff should be held as soon as possible to clear the problems of Afghanistan.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid