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Karzai A Powerless President, Says Mulla Salam

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by X-PASTER, Mar 19, 2010.

  1. X-PASTER

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    Karzai A Powerless President, Says Mulla Salam


    Rahimullah Yusufzai


    PESHAWAR: The Afghan Taliban commander whose defection to the government three years ago was hailed as a major development in Taliban-dominated Helmand province has now regretted his decision and termed Hamid Karzai as a powerless president.

    Mulla Abdul Salam, who was made district administrator of his native Musa Qala district as a reward for abandoning the Taliban, also accused the British forces deployed in Helmand of having come to Afghanistan to avenge their past defeats at the hands of the Afghan people.

    In an interview with the private Afghan Islamic Press (AIP), Mulla Salam alleged that the British troops in Musa Qala and elsewhere in Helmand don’t fight the Taliban. He claimed the British forces refused to help the Afghan police fighting Taliban in the Shah Karez area since Monday morning and were instead asking the cops to vacate the place.

    He said 14 Taliban fighters had been killed in the fighting while two policemen were killed and six others sustained injuries. Mulla Salam, who has survived a number of Taliban attempts on his life since his defection, demanded withdrawal of British soldiers from Musa Qala as he felt the situation would improve if they left the area.

    “We are still slaves. Foreign advisers are sitting in the offices. I am a Muslim, a brave Afghan and Mujahid and cannot tolerate to be enslaved by others,” he stressed. He disclosed that no Afghan minister can visit Helmand without the permission of British military commanders.

    Mulla Salam complained that he and Afghan policemen were besieged by the British forces in his office for several hours on Monday following a clash between the cops and the Britons. “It seems as if the British troops have captured this area.

    They haven’t served our people and have yet to build schools or mosques in Musa Qala,” he said. However, Mulla Salam refrained from criticizing other foreign forces fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan. He also refused to describe Afghanistan as an occupied country.

    However, he alleged that foreigners had created rifts in every Afghan home. “I joined the government to help restore peace in Afghanistan but now I have realized that the foreigners don’t want peace in our homeland,” he asserted.

    Asked as to why he defected to the government, Mulla Salam said he was deceived by the foreigners. “They deceived me. I thought they would really be fighting against Taliban who are the slaves of Pakistan and the British. However, Britons do not fight against Taliban in Musa Qala and they have started another game,” he argued.

    The former Taliban commander also didn’t have kind words for President Karzai and his government. “Actually, the president has no power. He cannot do anything,” he contended. “Afghanistan is an Islamic country but there is no Shariah system here. Look at our chief justice; he doesn’t fulfil the requirements of Shariah,” Mulla Salam maintained.

    Praised as a moderate Taliban with whom the US-led coalition forces and the Afghan government could do business, Mulla Salam now seems to be drifting apart from his new allies. He has developed differences with the British military authorities in Helmand and is a marked man for the Taliban.

    The Taliban haven’t forgiven him for joining hands with their enemies against them and have tried several times to eliminate him. Mulla Salam’s example shows that the experiment by the Afghan government and the US-led Nato forces to lure Taliban commanders and fighters to their side and reintegrate them is unlikely to work.


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