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The Loya Jirga and the Future of Afghanistan24:50
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On day one of the loya jirga, the traditional Afghan tribal council called in times of crisis, Interim President Hamid Karzai received support from two key Afghan figures. Former King Zaher Shah and former President Burhanuddin Rabbani have both thrown their support behind Karzai to head up Afghanistan's transitional government.

The 87-year-old former king opened the loya jirga ceremonies earlier today. The meetings are being held in a huge tent with over 1,500 delegates representing the various tribes and interests in Afghanistan.

Delegates are hopeful that the loya jirga will convene with the groundwork set for a new transitional government in Afghanistan that will be in place for two years. Interim President Karzai seems very likely to emerge as the head of that government.

This hour, a look inside the historic meeting in Afghanistan and the prospects for stability in the nation that once provided a safe haven to al Qaeda.

Guests:

Sarah Chayes, former reporter for National Public Radio in Afghanistan

Philip Smucker, correspondent with the Christian Science Monitor

This program aired on June 11, 2002.

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