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John Kerry arrives in Kabul amid election turmoil

US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) listens at a breakfast meeting at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing on July 10, 2014US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Afghanistan Friday on a key mission to try to quell tensions over disputed presidential polls, which have triggered fears of violence and ethnic unrest. Kerry, who landed on a pre-dawn, unannounced visit, had earlier said Afghanistan faces a “critical moment” as Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani wrangle to take up the reins while international forces withdraw following more than a decade of war. Preliminary results from a second round run-off have put Ghani in the lead, but Abdullah, who has already once lost a presidential bid, has declared himself the true winner, saying massive fraud robbed him of victory. The election stand-off has sparked concern that protests could spiral into ethnic violence and even lead to a return of the fighting between warlords that ravaged Afghanistan during the 1992-1996 civil war.

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