Afghanistan has been through a rough and contentious election. The bravery, patience, and resilience of the Afghan people has been on display since election day, when so many of them went to the polls in the face of threats and intimidation. And after many weeks of counting ballots and much debate over the flaws in the vote, Afghans showed today that their processes work.
I welcome President Karzai's announcement that he accepts the recommendations of the Electoral Complaints Commission and the Independent Election Commission’s statement on the August 20 first round election results. The leadership shown by the President, Dr. Abdullah and all of the other candidates has strengthened Afghanistan and kept faith with the best interests of the Afghan people.
Afghan plans are in place to enable a second round of voting, and we pledge our support to the election authorities to help them achieve a conclusion to the elections process. We remain committed to partnering with the Afghan people and their government on our shared objectives of strengthening good governance, tackling corruption, increasing economic opportunities and improving security for all Afghans.