- Title: Abdullah Abdullah hold parallel inauguration as Ghani is sworn in as president
- Date: 9th March 2020
- Summary: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (MARCH 9, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF ABDULLAH ABDULLAH, FORMER CHIEF EXECUTIVE AND RIVAL OF AFGHANISTAN'S PRESIDENT-ELECT ASHRAF GHANI WALKING AMONG HIS SUPPORTERS AT SAPEDAR PALACE AUDIENCE SEATED ABDULLAH UP TO PODIUM DURING SWEARING IN CEREMONY AUDIENCE SEATED ABDULLAH HOLDING HOLY QURAN AND BEING SWORN IN (SOUNDBITE) (Dari) FORMER CHIEF EXECUTIVE AND RIVAL OF AFGHANISTAN'S PRESIDENT-ELECT ASHRAF GHANI, ABDULLAH ABDULLAH, SAYING: "The Afghan people are the real winner of the election. If we had not compromised in 2014 for national stability and unity, the country would have been in crisis. But now the case is quite the opposite, and If we were to accept the result of fraud under any name this time, it would mean the end of democracy in Afghanistan." SPEECH IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Dari and Pashto) FORMER CHIEF EXECUTIVE AND RIVAL OF AFGHANISTAN'S PRESIDENT-ELECT ASHRAF GHANI, ABDULLAH ABDULLAH, SAYING: "The priority of our government is to establish a political consensus and appoint a delegation (to negotiate with the Taliban). To achieve peace, I am committed to making sacrifices if needed." SPEECH IN PROGRESS SWEARING IN SPEECH ENDING / CROWD CHEERING ABDULLAH BEING CONGRATULATED BY OFFICIALS AS CROWD CHEERS
- Reuters ID: LVA001C4BWPJB
- Location: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN
- City: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN
- Country: Afghanistan
- Duration: 00:01:43
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Story Text: Former chief executive and rival of Afghanistan's president-elect Ashraf Ghani, Abdullah Abdullah held a parallel inauguration as his rival, Ashraf Ghani, was sworn in as president of Afghanistan on Monday (March 9).
Both Ghani and Abdullah say they are Afghanistan's rightful leader following a disputed election last September, a stand-off that threatens political chaos days after the United States and the Taliban signed a deal on the withdrawal of U.S.-led international forces.
Planned morning ceremonies were postponed, and guests kept waiting, while U.S. Special Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad tried to broker a last-minute deal between the longtime political foes, but there was no immediate word of a breakthrough.
"If we were to accept the result of fraud under any name this time, it would mean the end of democracy in Afghanistan," Abdullah said in a speech at his inauguration ceremony.
The Taliban, which ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001 and has been waging an insurgency since shortly after its fall from power, has made their release a condition for talks but Ghani said last week he had rejected the demand.
Diplomats are now waiting to see whether Abdullah appoints rival ministers and governors, and whether they take up office by force, said two diplomatic sources who declined to be named.
The government is meant to be preparing for talks with the Taliban, to follow up on the Feb. 29 pact on the withdrawal of U.S. troops after 18 years of war.
(Production: Samargul Zwak, Aziz Mohammad, Sayed Hassib, Hameed Farzad)
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