Afghanistan Constitution: Key Points

BBC, UK,, January 04, 2004


Below are the key points of Afghanistan's first post-Taleban constitution, adopted by the country's grand assembly, or loya jirga, on Sunday, as carried by the French news agency AFP.

• Afghanistan is an Islamic republic with Islam as its "sacred religion";

• Followers of other religions are free to perform religious ceremonies in accordance with the provisions of the law;

• No law shall be contrary to the beliefs and practices of Islam;

• Men and women have equal rights and duties before the law;

• Afghanistan will have a presidential system of government;

• The president is responsible to the nation and the lower house, or Wolesi Jirga;

• The president will be directly elected by the Afghan people with two vice-presidents, who are nominated by presidential candidates when standing for election;

• A national assembly will consist of two houses: a Wolesi Jirga or "house of people" and a Meshrano Jirga or "house of elders";

• The Wolesi Jirga will be directly elected by the Afghan people;

• The Wolesi Jirga has the authority to impeach ministers;

• The president will appoint ministers, the attorney general and central bank governor with the approval of the Wolesi Jirga;

• Ministers should not hold foreign passports but the Wolesi Jirga should vote whether to approve appointments of ministers holding dual nationality;

• Former king Mohammad Zahir Shah is to be accorded the title "Father of the Nation" for his lifetime ;

• Pashto and Dari are the official languages with other minority languages to be considered official languages in the areas in which they are spoken.


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