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13 Pakistan militants die in fresh infighting

At least 13 militants were killed in a bombing and a gunfight in Pakistan's restive tribal areas Friday, the latest clashes in almost a week of infighting between rival Taliban factions. A total of 56 people have been killed in the violence which erupted on Sunday between supporters of commander Khan Said Sajna and followers of the late Hakimullah Mehsud group in troubled North Waziristan. Both factions are part of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) umbrella group, which has been waging a bloody seven-year insurgency against the state.

Cricket: Afghan cricketers to train in Pakistan

Afghanistan's fast-rising cricket team will train in Pakistan under the guidance of two former international captains as they prepare for their maiden World Cup appearance next year, their coach said Thursday. Aamir Sohail will help the batsmen while Rashid Latif will help the wicket-keepers as the minnows begin tuning up for the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Frontrunner in Afghan vote rules out coalition government

By Maria Golovnina KABUL (Reuters) - A frontrunner to succeed Hamid Karzai as Afghanistan's president voiced the possibility of teaming up with a rival on Wednesday but ruled out forming a coalition government in order to avoid a second-round runoff. Afghanistan voted in a landmark presidential election last weekend which, if successful, will usher in the first democratic handover of power in the country's history as Karzai prepares to step down after more than 12 years in office.

Two Afghan poll candidates scent victory as run-off looms

Two leading candidates in Afghanistan's presidential election each claimed Wednesday to be winning the vote count easily, but said they would be ready to contest a second-round run-off if necessary. More than seven million people defied Taliban threats of violence in Saturday's election to select a successor to President Hamid Karzai as US-led troops prepare to exit the country. Unless one candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two names will go head-to-head in another election scheduled for late May.

Two Afghan poll candidates scent victory as run-off looms

Two leading candidates in Afghanistan's presidential election each claimed Wednesday to be winning the vote count easily, but said they would be ready to contest a second-round run-off if necessary. More than seven million people defied Taliban threats of violence in Saturday's election to select a successor to President Hamid Karzai as US-led troops prepare to exit the country. Unless one candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two names will go head-to-head in another election scheduled for late May.

Afghan election complaints watchdog warns of fraud

KABUL (Reuters) - Afghanistan's presidential election last Saturday may have suffered a significant degree of fraud, the country's election complaints commission said, warning that all votes cast irregularly would be thrown out. The final result is not expected for weeks as ballot boxes have to be returned to Kabul from distant corners of the insurgency-racked country, with some carried down from the mountains by mule.

Fresh clashes between Pakistani militants kill 14

Fresh clashes on Tuesday between two feuding factions of the Pakistani Taliban left 14 people dead, security officials and militant sources said. A total of 34 people have now been killed since fighting broke out Sunday in the Waziristan tribal district between supporters of Khan Said Sajna and followers of the late Hakimullah Mehsud, they said.

Afghan presidential election provokes more than 3,000 complaints

By Mirwais Harooni KABUL (Reuters) - Afghan authorities have received more than 3,000 reports of violations from last weekend's presidential election, exceeding the tally following a 2009 vote that was marred by widespread fraud. The three frontrunners have all complained of fraud in the April 5 vote meant to usher in Afghanistan's first democratic transfer of power, as incumbent Hamid Karzai prepares to step down after more than 12 years as head of state.

Pakistanis target drones with giant posters of child victims

A group of Pakistani artists are hoping to generate "empathy" among US drone operators by placing giant posters of children meant to be seen from the air in the country's troubled tribal regions. The project, titled #NotABugSplat, has released a photograph -- itself taken from the air with the use of a mini-helicopter drone -- of a poster laid out in a field that shows the face of a girl who lost both her parents in one of the controversial strikes in the northwestern Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province.

Afghan election 'less fraudulent' than 2009

The election to choose a successor to Afghan President Hamid Karzai appeared "less fraudulent" than the scandal-tainted 2009 vote, poll officials said Monday, despite complaints being made against all the candidates. More than seven million people defied bad weather and Taliban threats of violence to vote in Saturday's first round of the election, earning praise from world leaders.
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