Obama hails Afghanistan vote

2014-04-05 22:50
US president Barack Obama. (Jewel Samad, AFP)

US president Barack Obama. (Jewel Samad, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - US President Barack Obama welcomed the completion of Afghanistan's presidential vote, set to usher in the country's first democratic transfer of power, saying it was critical to ensure continued international support.

Masses of Afghan voters lined up outside polling stations - with a final turnout election officials say could exceed 50% - to pick a successor to President Hamid Karzai for the first time since the US-led invasion in 2001.

Karzai has refused to sign a security agreement that would allow the US to keep around 10 000 troops in Afghanistan to train local forces and hunt al-Qaeda, and relations with Washington have dropped to a new low.

Afghans have taken over responsibility for security from US-led forces, and this year the last of the Nato coalition's 51 000 combat troops will pull out, leaving local forces to battle the resilient Taliban insurgency without their help.

Obama, in a statement, congratulated the Afghan voters "on behalf of the American people".

The elections "promise to usher in the first democratic transfer of power in Afghanistan's history" and "represent another important milestone in Afghans taking full responsibility for their country", he said.

"These elections are critical to securing Afghanistan's democratic future, as well as continued international support."

The US president urged election officials to make their formal decision on the outcome fairly, "knowing that the most critical voices on the outcome are those of Afghans themselves".

Obama, who has had tense ties with Karzai, said "we look forward to continuing our partnership with the new government chosen by the Afghan people on the basis of mutual respect and mutual accountability."

"The United States continues to support a sovereign, stable, unified and democratic Afghanistan," he added.

Obama also paid tribute to the Americans who have lost their lives or otherwise made sacrifices in and for Afghanistan.

Since the United States toppled the Taliban regime in 2001, 2 316 American troops have been killed, according to iCasualties.org, which uses Pentagon data to estimate combat losses.

Read more on:    barack obama  |  hamid karzai  |  us  |  afghanistan
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
2 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Middle-seat kids: Why are they special?

Limited legroom, a siblings on each side... the middle seat has long been considered the short straw in a car but does it have a secret?

 

Stay safe

Pro's and con's of accredited driver-training
Juvenile pillion riders? Play safe...
Need a family ride? SA's top Mommy Cars
Mom's driving-school dream come true
Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may need to re-look at the fine print. Things are not what they seem. Trust your intuition and look into things a bit deeper...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.