Uzbek warlord rejects Afghan accord
KABUL, Afghanistan -- Ethnic Uzbek warlord General Abdul Rashid Dostum has announced he will boycott Afghanistan's recently agreed interim government because he said it was not fully representative.
Dostum, whose forces dominate an area of northern territory including the city of Mazar-e Sharrif, said his faction was not fairly represented in the government agreement signed in Germany Wednesday.
"We are very sad," Dostum told Reuters news agency from northern Afghanistan.
"We announce our boycott of this government and will not go to Kabul until there is a proper government in place."
Speaking via satellite phone, Dostum said he wanted his mainly Uzbek Junbish-i-Milli faction to be given the foreign ministry in the new government.
Instead, it received the portfolios of mining, agriculture and industry.
Those decisions were part of a landmark accord signed by four Afghan factions at the U.N.-brokered talks in Bonn, Germany earlier this week.
The agreement establishes a 29-member interim cabinet headed by Pashtun leader Hamid Karzai, meant as the first step toward a broad-based government representing the full range of Afghanistan's ethnic groups and regions.
"This is a humiliation for us," Dostrum said.
He added he would deny officials of the new government access to the north, where Afghanistan's oil and gas resources are located.
Meanwhile, a Pashtun spiritual leader has said the new power-sharing deal is "unjust".
Sayed Ahmad Gailani, leader of the National Islamic Front of Afghanistan and represented at the talks in Germany, said those that had an important role in the fight against the Soviet occupancy in the 1980s have not been represented.
"Injustices have been committed in the distribution of ministries," he told a news conference in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad.
"Although the new set-up is not so balanced, I still hope the United Nations will form a committee on getting people together for a Loya Jirga [traditional assembly] so that in later steps things are settled," he said.
Gailani was represented at the Bonn talks by his son, Hamid.
Prior to the talks Gailani had hoped former Afghan king Zahir Shah would be the future leader of Afghanistan.
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