Afghanistan: Brahimi addresses panel laying groundwork for Emergency Loya Jirga

29 January 2002
Lakhdar Brahimi

The United Nations top envoy in Afghanistan, Lakhdar Brahimi, today addressed the first session of the special panel in charge of preparations for convening the Emergency Loya Jirga, which will decide on a transitional government until democratic elections can be held.

The 21-member Special Independent Commission was announced last Friday after Mr. Brahimi had whittled the list down from 300 names. According to the Bonn Agreement, which spells out the political process for the future of Afghanistan, the Commission has the final authority to determine the procedures for, and the number of people who will participate in, the Emergency Loya Jirga.

Two working sessions were held in Kabul today, according to a UN spokesman. The formal inauguration of the Commission is expected to take place when Hamid Karzai, Chairman of the Interim Administration of Afghanistan, returns to Kabul.

Mr. Karzai is currently in the United States and is expected to arrive at UN Headquarters in New York at around 9 a.m. Wednesday to address an open meeting of the Security Council.


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