Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Wednesday, June 04, 2003

Another small victory for Karzai, in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan's government took over a northern border post run by warlord Abdul Rashid Dostum as it moves to bring customs revenue under its control, Agence France- Presse said, citing Finance Minister Ashraf Ghani.

``The port of Hairatan in Mazar-e-Sharif has been brought within central management,'' AFP cited Ghani as saying yesterday in the capital, Kabul. ``Payment of revenue from that port to various groups has ceased.''

Hairatan, 70 kilometers (44 miles) north of Mazar-e-Sharif, lies on the Amu Darya river opposite Termez in Uzbekistan on a main trade route into central Asia. Import duties at the border post are estimated at $200,000 a day and were split between Dostum's Jumbesh militia and the rival Jamiat and Hezb-i-Wahdat groups, AFP said without citing anyone.

The government of President Hamid Karzai won promises last month from regional governors to hand over as much as $500 million in annual customs revenue. The governor of the western province of Herat provided $20 million in tax money last week, AFP cited Ghani as saying. Karzai has pledged to end the rule of warlords in Afghanistan and in April introduced a program with the United Nations to disarm militias within three years.

< email | 6/04/2003 01:31:00 PM | link

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