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Afghan defense minister resigns after parliamentary censure

August 7, 2012 13:26

KABUL - Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak resigned on Tuesday after losing a no-confidence vote in parliament on his handling of security and being relegated to an acting role as President Hamid Karzai searched for a replacement.

Wardak's decision leaves the vital position of defense minister vacant at the peak of the summer fighting months and as US and French troops draw down numbers and hand over to Afghan forces.

Violence in Afghanistan is at its fiercest since US-led Afghan troops overthrew the Taliban government in 2001. Insurgents have extended their reach from traditional strongholds in southern and eastern areas to parts of the country once considered relatively safe.

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