An Afghan official says that at least 16 people, including four foreign soldiers, were killed yesterday in a suicide attack near a clinic in eastern Afghanistan.
The international coalition said that four of its service members were killed in the attack, but did not disclose any further details, including their nationalities.
Wahid Seddiqi, spokesman for the provincial governor of Parwan Province, said the soldiers, at least 10 civilians and two police officers were killed when a suicide bomber attacked Afghan and foreign forces near Charakar, the provincial capital.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement sent to the media.
The violence came as Afghanistan is mired in an electoral crisis after one of the candidates in the presidential elections, Abdullah Abdullah, refused to accept any results until millions of ballots are audited for fraud.
Afghan officials released preliminary election results on Monday showing former Afghan minister of finance Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai well in the lead for the presidency, but said no winner could be declared because millions of ballots were being audited for fraud.
The announcement came as Ahmadzai was locked in a standoff with Abdullah, who has refused to accept any results until all fraudulent ballots are invalidated. A spokesman for his campaign rejected the results and called the decision to release them “a coup.”
The Independent Election Commission (IEC) acknowledged that vote-rigging had occurred and said ballots from about 7,000 more of the nearly 23,000 polling stations would be audited.
“We cannot deny fraud and violations in the process,” commission head Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani told reporters. “In some cases some security forces were involved, in other cases senior government officials like governors or lower-level officials were involved.”
Nuristani said that the results would now be subject to auditing and adjudication of complaints, before the official result are released on about July 24.
“The preliminary result in no way means the announcement of the winner of the election,” he said.
“A change in the result is possible,” he added.
“The announcement of results was a coup against the will of the people,” said Mujib Rahman Rahimi, a spokesman for Abdullah. “We don’t recognize the result and we have cut off all contact with the IEC and Ghani’s team.”
In contrast, Ghani welcomed the announcement, with campaign spokeswoman Azita Rafat saying: “We worked hard and saw the result, but we don’t want to prejudge the final results.”
The results showed that Ghani had about 4.5 million votes, or 56 percent, while Abdullah had 3.5 million votes, or 44 percent, according to the commission. Turnout was more than 50 percent, commission spokesman Noor Mohammad Noor said.
Meanwhile, US Secretary of State John Kerry warned yesterday that any attempt to seize power in Afghanistan would cost the country its international aid, after preliminary results of presidential elections sparked a row between the two candidates.
In a statement, Kerry said: “I have noted reports of protests in Afghanistan and of suggestions of a ‘parallel government’ with the gravest concern. The United States expects Afghan electoral institutions to conduct a full and thorough review of all reasonable allegations of irregularities.”
“Any action to take power by extra-legal means will cost Afghanistan the financial and security support of the United States and the international community,” he added.
The next president will lead Afghanistan at a pivotal time as US-led troops end their 13-year war against Taliban insurgents and the fragile economy struggles with declining international aid.
On the Chinese microblogging platform Sina Weibo, enthusiastic slackers share their tips: Fill up a thermos with whiskey, do planks or stretches in the work pantry at regular intervals, drink liters of water to prompt lots of trips to the toilet on work time, and, once there, spend time on social media or playing games on your phone. “Not working hard is everyone’s basic right,” one commenter wrote. “With or without legal protection, everyone has the right to not work hard.” Young Chinese people are pushing back against an engrained culture of overwork, and embracing a philosophy of laziness known as “touching
‘STUNNED’: With help from an official at the US Department of Justice, Donald Trump reportedly planned to oust the acting attorney general in a bid to overturn the election Former US president Donald Trump was at his Florida resort on Saturday, beginning post-presidency life while US President Joe Biden settled into the White House, but in Washington and beyond, the chaos of the 45th president’s final days in office continued to throw out damaging aftershocks. In yet another earth-shaking report, the New York Times said that Trump plotted with an official at the US Department of Justice to fire the acting attorney general, then force Georgia Republicans to overturn his defeat in that state. Meanwhile, former acting US secretary of defense Christopher Miller made an extraordinary admission, telling Vanity Fair that
The Palauan president-elect has vowed to stand up to Chinese “bullying” in the Pacific, saying that the archipelago nation is set to stand by its alliances with “true friends,” Taiwan and the US. Surangel Whipps Jr, 52, a supermarket owner and two-time senator from a prominent Palauan family, is to be sworn in as the new president tomorrow, succeeding his brother-in-law, Tommy Remengesau Jr. In a forthright interview, Whipps said that the US had demonstrated over the years that it was a reliable friend of Palau, most recently shown by its delivery of 6,000 doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. “It’s important for
Boeing set a target of designing and certifying its jetliners to fly on 100 percent sustainable fuels by 2030, amid rising pressure on planemakers to take climate change seriously. Regulators allow a 50-50 blend of sustainable and conventional fuels, and Boeing on Friday said it would work with authorities to raise the limit. Rival Airbus is considering another tack: a futuristic lineup of hydrogen-powered aircraft that would reach the skies by 2035. The aircraft manufacturers face growing public clamor to cut emissions in the aviation industry, which added more than 1 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere in 2019, according to