Afghan ballot audit starts; Kabul airport attacked - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |

Afghan ballot audit starts; Kabul airport attacked

Posted: Updated:
  • NationalMore>>

  • War College to investigate plagiarism allegations

    War College to investigate plagiarism allegations

    Thursday, July 24 2014 9:25 PM EDT2014-07-25 01:25:19 GMT
    Sen. John Walsh said his unattributed use of others' work in his master's thesis was not plagiarism but "a few citations that were unintentionally left out of a term paper" that he blamed in part on...More >>
    Sen. John Walsh remained steadfast Thursday amid an investigation into whether he plagiarized a research project required for a master's degree, winning fresh backing from fellow Democrats in Montana and the governor...More >>
  • Man says he shot burglar who said she was pregnant

    Man says he shot burglar who said she was pregnant

    Thursday, July 24 2014 9:24 PM EDT2014-07-25 01:24:58 GMT
    An 80-year-old man says he shot and killed a fleeing woman whom he had caught burglarizing his home, despite her plea that she was pregnant.More >>
    Police said Thursday they're deciding whether to arrest an 80-year-old man who shot a fleeing, unarmed burglar despite her telling him she was pregnant, but they have arrested the woman's accomplice on suspicion of...More >>
  • As inmate died, lawyers debated if he was in pain

    As inmate died, lawyers debated if he was in pain

    Thursday, July 24 2014 9:06 PM EDT2014-07-25 01:06:04 GMT
    A condemned murderer took nearly two hours to die and gasped for about 90 minutes during an execution in Arizona that quickly rekindled the national debate on capital punishment in the U.S.More >>
    The nearly two-hour execution of a convicted murderer prompted a series of phone calls involving the governor's office, the prison director, lawyers and judges as the inmate gasped for more than 90 minutes.More >>
By AMIR SHAH
Associated Press

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - Afghanistan's election commission began auditing ballots Thursday following a U.S.-brokered deal between the two presidential contenders while a brazen attack on the Kabul airport underscored the dangers the country still faces in its troubled democracy.

The pre-dawn rocket attack on Kabul International Airport temporarily shut down the facility and set off a gunbattle with security forces in which four attackers were killed, officials said.

The militants occupied two buildings that were under construction some 700 meters (yards) north of the facility and used them to direct rockets and gunfire toward the airport and international jet fighters flying over Kabul, said Afghan army Gen. Afzal Aman. Several rockets hit the airport but no planes were damaged, he added.

Kabul Police Chief Mohammed Zahir Zahir said four of the attackers were killed and that the attack was halted without any civilian or police casualties. The airport later reopened and operations returned to normal, Zahir said.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed responsibility for the pre-dawn assault in a call to The Associated Press.

The airport hosts civilian traffic and serves as a base for NATO-led forces that have been fighting the Taliban and other insurgents for more than a decade. Rocket attacks near the airport are not rare, but are not usually this close.

The attack comes at a tense time in Afghanistan in the aftermath of the disputed second round of a presidential election seen as key to insuring a peaceful transfer of power ahead of the withdrawal of most foreign troops by the end of the year.

Unofficial and disputed preliminary results showed former Finance Minister Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai well ahead of his rival, former Foreign Minister Abdullah Abdullah.

But since fraud was alleged on both sides, the deal negotiated over the weekend by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry provides that every one of the 8 million ballots will be audited under national and international supervision over the next three or four weeks.

"At today's kickoff, 33 boxes were audited, each in the presence of international and domestic observers," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters in Washington. "And the first day of audits proceeded professionally, sending a good tone for the process."

The prolonged uncertainty about the outcome of the election, along with a Taliban spring offensive seeking to undermine the Western-backed government, had jeopardized a central plank of President Barack Obama's strategy to leave behind a stable state after the withdrawal of most U.S. troops at year's end.

There has been increased urgency for the Afghan government to sign a security pact with the United States that would allow nearly 10,000 American forces to stay in the country for two more years.

Outgoing President Hamid Karzai, who was constitutionally barred from seeking a third term has refused to sign the deal, saying he would leave it to his successor.

Both Abdullah and Ahmadzai have promised to sign the pact, known as the Bilateral Security Agreement.

"We still feel comfortable with the timeline to sign the BSA," said Psaki.

While the audit continues, Karzai remains in office. He had been expected to turn over the reins of his presidency on Aug. 2, but the inauguration of a new president will now await the ballot audit.

The security situation in Afghanistan, which has long seen near-daily attacks, continues to be precarious.

On Tuesday, a suicide bomber blew up a car packed with explosives near a busy market and a mosque in eastern Afghanistan, killing dozens of people in one of the deadliest insurgent attacks on civilians since the 2001 U.S.-led invasion to topple the Taliban.

___

Associated Press Writer Matthew Lee in Washington contributed to his report.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • U.S. & World NewsMore>>

  • War College to investigate plagiarism allegations

    War College to investigate plagiarism allegations

    Thursday, July 24 2014 9:25 PM EDT2014-07-25 01:25:19 GMT
    Sen. John Walsh said his unattributed use of others' work in his master's thesis was not plagiarism but "a few citations that were unintentionally left out of a term paper" that he blamed in part on...More >>
    Sen. John Walsh remained steadfast Thursday amid an investigation into whether he plagiarized a research project required for a master's degree, winning fresh backing from fellow Democrats in Montana and the governor...More >>
  • UN school in Gaza caught in cross-fire; 15 killed

    UN school in Gaza caught in cross-fire; 15 killed

    Thursday, July 24 2014 9:14 PM EDT2014-07-25 01:14:57 GMT
    Israeli tanks and warplanes are pummeling the Gaza Strip as U.S. and other diplomats push for a cease-fire with Hamas militants.More >>
    A U.N. school in Gaza crowded with hundreds of Palestinians seeking refuge from fierce fighting came under fire Thursday, killing at least 15 civilians and leaving a sad tableau of blood-spattered pillows, blankets and...More >>
  • 10 Things to Know for Friday

    10 Things to Know for Friday

    Thursday, July 24 2014 9:13 PM EDT2014-07-25 01:13:09 GMT
    By The Associated Press Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today:More >>
    By The Associated Press Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday:More >>
Powered by WorldNow

News Channel 25 KXXV-TV
P.O. Box 2522
Waco, TX 76702

Phone Numbers:
Main: 254-754-2525
Tip Line: 254-757-2525

Links
Contact Us
KXXV Employment Opportunites
FCC Filings
Advertise on KXXV

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KXXV. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.