President Hamid Karzai is calling on Taliban and other militants to "vote for the president they want" in Afghanistan's Aug. 20 presidential election.

Karzai is also telling the militants that they should vote for the provincial council delegates they support. Karzai was speaking during a news conference Saturday at the presidential palace.

Forty-one candidates are running for president. A recent poll showed Karzai with a big lead over his opponents despite the increasingly bloody Taliban-led insurgency.

The Taliban are not fielding candidates and have warned Afghans against voting in the election.

Karzai said Afghanistan will continue to support the fight against terrorism no matter who wins the presidency.