Source Pravda.Ru

President Karzai Delays visit to Pakistan

President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan postponed his visit to Pakistan.

"Hamid Karzai's visit to Pakistan scheduled for July 26 was postponed and will not take place in the near future," Radio Kabul reported yesterday, quoting an official in Mr. Karzai's administration.

A source in the presidential administration said that the postponement was because of the October 9 presidential elections.

Presidential candidates must submit their documents to the Afghan election commission by 4:00 p.m. on July 26. All candidates must submit copies of 10,000 voter registration cards from voters who support them, and the receipts for 50,000 afghanis (about $1,000). The candidates must also name his vice presidential running mates.

Twenty-one candidates have stated their intention to run for president, however only Mohammad Mohaqiq, the leader of the Wahdat (Unity) group, has filed all of the documents.

Two former Northern Alliance leaders - Defense Minister Qasim Fahim (ethnic Tajik) and Abdurashid Dustum, an ethnic Uzbek who virtually controls northern Afghanistan - stated their intention to run for president.

During his visit, President Karzai intended to sign a special agreement with the leaders of Pakistan. The agreement called for opening polling stations at Afghan refugee camps in Pakistan. About 3-4 million Afghan refugees are still in Pakistan.

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