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Afghanistan announces results in fraud-marred vote

By the CNN Wire Staff
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Votes from more than 3,000 polling stations have been invalidated
  • Results are in for all but one province
  • The United States calls the process a step forward

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) -- Afghanistan's troubled parliamentary elections inched a step closer to conclusion Wednesday as results in all but one of the nation's 34 provinces were announced.

Although votes from more than 3,000 polling stations have now been thrown out because of suspected fraud, the final results will stand, said Fazal Ahmad Manawi, who heads the Independent Election Commission.

The 11 seats allocated for Ghazni province have yet to be finalized, said the commission's Zekria Barakzai.

Ghazni remains unresolved because a deteriorating security situation kept voters in many parts of that province from casting a ballot in the September 18 elections. Barakzai said election commission will decide the status of the Ghazni seats next week.

It is not known yet which one of Afghanistan's ethnic groups, including the Pashtun-speaking majority, won the most seats in the Wolesi Jirga, the lower house of the National Assembly.

The United States welcomed the certified election results, saying that despite irregularities, the election commission and the Electoral Complaints Commission "have worked well to advance a credible process."

CNN's Samson Desta contributed to this report.