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Abdullah Abdullah Afghanistan Analysis Pashtun Presidential election Tajik

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Abdullah Abdullah - 2009 runner-up back in fray

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Abdullah Abdullah signs the register of 2014 presidential candidates Reuters/Mohammad Ismail

Abdullah Abdullah, 54, was the runner-up in the 2009 presidential election with 30.5 per cent of the votes. After alleging fraud he bowed out of the race, thus avoiding a second round. In 2010 he set up the Coalition for Change and Hope, a grouping of anti-Karzai parties that became the National Coalition of Afghanistan in 2011.


Born of a Pashtun father and Tajik mother, he was a member of the Tajik-dominated

Northern Alliance when it fought against Soviet occupation and the Taliban and was close to Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Masood, a national hero murdered by suicide-bombers just before the 9/11 attacks on the US.

The backing of Mohammad Mohaqiq, who was on Hamid Karzai's ticket in 2009, should bring in votes from the Hazara ethnic group.

Running mates:

  • First vice-president, Mohammad Khan;
  • Second vice-president, Mohammad Mohaqiq.
     

Read Abdullah Abdullah's life in dates.