Karzai needs to be reminded of his 'constitutional role' as President, not uncrowned king: NYT

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Kabul, Jan 22 (ANI): Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai's daring move to delay this weekend's opening session of the Parliament despite being under the scanner for charges of fraud in last year's parliamentary elections, has rung an alarm bell that indicates the need of his country's international partners like the US to intervene in explaining to Karzai that as a President, he is accountable to his people and his country's Constitution.

According to a New York Times editorial, US President Barack Obama must make it clear to Karzai, publicly and privately, that he should stop behaving like an uncrowned king, and focus on his duties as a President of his country who is bound by laws and norms of the constitution.

It also said that although American-led military forces have made progress in loosening the Taliban's grip on the southern province of Kandahar, the absence of an active government would make it difficult to stop them from re-emerging and causing disturbances in Afghanistan.

It is almost five months that the country has completed its elections, but Afghanistan is still looking forward to having an accountable government that can be approached by all groups and regions. Karzai would not stop behaving like a king unless the Parliament starts its session soon, it added.

September's vote was tainted by irregularities and frauds, which have already been investigated and adjudicated by Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission, the only legal body constitutionally empowered to take such steps. Those findings have also been reportedly backed by the international community.

Karzai's court has no legal standing and should not be allowed to have the last word, the editorial said.

Meanwhile, members of the new Parliament have said that they would meet on Sunday in another location if Karzai tries to prevent them from using the Parliament building, a move that could probably be accomplished only when the United Nations, NATO and Washington succeed in pressurising Karzai to back off, it added. (ANI)

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