KABUL: The new Afghan government headed by Sibghatullah Mojadidi is leading his nation towards political consolidation and economic recovery despite heavy odds left over by the 14-year long war against the Soviet occupation forces and their local agents

The government has been recognized by Pakistan while other countries are bound to follow suit in the next few days. One thing however is fairly clear that the Mojadidi government is not likely to forget soon the anti-Afghan stand of the Indian government during the country’s years of trial.

While interested media groups are playing up internal bickering within the new regime its fairly clear that the differences have been sorted out or being sorted out quickly. Interestingly the new regime announced amnesty to all political prisoners barring former President Najibullah who is hiding somewhere in the country

In Pakistan a spokesman for the Hikmatyar said he may appoint a representative to serve the interim government but there was no immediate reaction from the dominant Mujadidi group.

Most members of the 51-member ruling council formed by different guerilla groups entered Afghanistan from the Pakistan side

Many of these guerilla groups came from Peshawar while others joined them en route.

While guerilla leader Hikmatyar declined to serve as prime minister under an unelected government the Pakistan based push to group leader Ustad Farid had been nominated as the new prime minister of Afghanistan.

Meanwhile Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on April 29 paid a flying visit here to proclaim solidarity with the new Afghan regime even as sporadic fighting continued in Kabul after April 28 capture of the interior minister by troops loyal to Sigbatullah Mujadidis interim government.

During his unannounced visit to the Afghan capital  Sharif held over two hours talk with Mujadidi who took over as interim head of state April 28 ending 14 years of armed resistance by Mujahedeen against the communist regime

Sharif the first foreign leader to visit the new Afghan Mujahedeen government was accompanied by three senior ministers of his cabinet apart from the army chief and Saudi intelligence chief prince “Tuski Al Faisal.

The Pak premier later announced along with Mujadidi that the destinies of the two countries were locked together.

Before lying back hoped that “everyone would extend a helping hand to restore peace in the war ravaged country. Earlier in the day Mujadidi met colleagues of his interim Mujahideen council while people fled from southwest suburbs of rounds and began business for the first time since the outbreak of fighting Reuter ads.

City transport ran sporadically with frequent check posts set up by Mujahideen guerilla factions Vegetable shops were jammed and even some tourists shops were seen open. However power supply was off in the most of Kabul and international telephone lines were cut

Earlier speaking to reporters at the foreign ministry Mujadidi expressed the opinion that fundamentalist leader Gulbuddin Helamatyar was not in a position to pose a serious threat to the interim Mujahideen council

“He cannot do too much against Lucknow” he said though note laborating on the magnitude of the threat from Hekmatyar.

Article extracted from this publication >> May 8, 1996