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Afghan election back from the brink after resignation of official

Published on Jun 23, 2014 10:14 PM

KABUL, Afghanistan (AFP) - A top Afghan election official accused of fraud resigned Monday, raising hopes of ending a political deadlock that threatens to derail the country's presidential succession as Nato troops withdraw.

Zia-ul-Haq Amarkhail, head of the secretariat of the Independent Election Commission (IEC), denied all charges against him but said he was stepping down to save the election process.

Presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah has boycotted the counting of votes from the run-off election a week ago, accusing the IEC of being biased against him in the contest against his rival Ashraf Ghani.

"Now the door is open for us to talk to the (election) commission and talk about the conditions and circumstances that will help the process," Abdullah told reporters after Amarkhail resigned.

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