Afghanistan: Minister who headed ‘most corrupt’ gov’t dept appointed to ‘anti-drug’ role

by Jan 17, 2010Foreign Policy0 comments

Zarar Ahmad Moqbel has been appointed by President Hamid Karzai as Afghanistan’s counter-narcotics minister. British officials are reportedly “dismayed” at the appointment, since they lobbied to have him removed from his post as Interior Minister in 2008 for his alleged involvement in corruption. Reports the Telegraph: The interior ministry, which is responsible for the police, […]

Zarar Ahmad Moqbel has been appointed by President Hamid Karzai as Afghanistan’s counter-narcotics minister. British officials are reportedly “dismayed” at the appointment, since they lobbied to have him removed from his post as Interior Minister in 2008 for his alleged involvement in corruption. Reports the Telegraph:

The interior ministry, which is responsible for the police, became notorious during his stewardship for selling positions and appointing predatory police chiefs who often colluded with drugs traffickers.

At the time of his sacking from the Interior Ministry, the New York Times reported:

The pattern of corruption, senior diplomats in Kabul say, is so pervasive that it has contributed, with deteriorating security conditions, to a collapse in the popular backing for the Karzai government.The diplomats point to the Interior Ministry, responsible for a police force of 80,000, as the most corrupt of all government organizations, with top officials routinely taking bribes for appointing police officers and protecting from arrest a wide range of wrongdoers, including drug traffickers who run Afghanistan’s $4-billion-a-year opium trade.

So a guy sacked for alleged corruption, who oversaw “the most corrupt” organization in the entire Afghan government, with corruption including involvement in the drug trade, is now heading the Afghan government’s “anti-drug” efforts.

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About Jeremy R. Hammond

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