Afghanistan: procedures for Loya Jirga announced in Kabul

1 April 2002 –

As new procedures were announced in Kabul for convening Afghanistan's Emergency Loya Jirga, or tribal council, a senior United Nations official in the country has called the process key to the country's future peace.

Under the procedures, the UN will be responsible for providing security and order during elections to the Emergency Loya Jirga. Karl Fischer, the Chief of Staff of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), said that step was part of a process to achieve, within two or three years, "a situation where a peaceful Afghanistan is guaranteed, where the Afghans themselves take their destiny into their own hands."

Mr. Fischer made his remarks on Sunday during a press conference held by members of the Special Independent Commission for the Convening of the Emergency Loya Jirga, who presented newly adopted procedures on the process.

According to those procedures, elections to the Emergency Loya Jirga will be held in two stages. Of the body's 1,451 members, 1,051 will be elected, with the remaining 400 selected by other means in accordance with the Bonn Agreement, which paved the way for Afghanistan's political transition. The Emergency Loya Jirga will meet in Kabul between 10 and 16 June.

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