KABUL (AP) - The runner-up in Afghanistan's presidential
election is pushing for an interim government to shepherd the
country through the winter.
The possibility of a runoff between former foreign minister
Abdullah Abdullah and President Hamid Karzai emerged after a
U.N.-backed panel threw out a third of President Hamid Karzai's
votes from the Aug. 20 ballot. That pulled his totals below the 50
percent threshold. Karzai is expected to acknowledge as much today.
But a November runoff could be hampered by winter snows that
block off much of the north of the country starting mid-month. On
top of that, another election risks the same fraud that derailed
the August vote, and there are fears it could incite violence and
increase ethnic divisions.
A spokesman for the Abdullah campaign says a coalition or
power-sharing government would not be acceptable as a permanent
solution. But he says if security or weather concerns preclude a
runoff before spring, an interim administration should be worked