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October 19th, 2009
04:01 PM ET

Election Audit: Karzai forced into runoff

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/10/19/afghanistan.election.fraud/art.commission.afp.gi.jpg caption="Workers of the Afghan Election Commission check ballots in Kabul earlier this month."]

Democracy International

Today, the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC) released the long anticipated decision resulting from the audit of polling stations that met the criteria of its September 8, 2009, audit and recount order.

Democracy International has analyzed the results from data previously released and believes the ECC audit decisions should result in a runoff election, according to Afghanistan’s Electoral Law.

Our calculations suggest the percentage rejection of the ballots cast in each of the audit categories will reduce President Hamid Karzai’s level of support to approximately 48.29% of the overall vote. This reduces his vote share below the 50% threshold necessary for a first-round victory, and should necessitate a runoff election between Hamid Karzai, and the second-place candidate, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah. The IEC has a responsibility to certify the results based on the ECC’s decisions.

In addition, the ECC has decided to invalidate 210 polling stations based on Priority A complaints, 147 of which are included in the IEC’s published preliminary result.

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