Speaker Hamid Karzai at ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival 2018

Hamid Karzai


Hamid Karzai was the president of Afghanistan from 2004-2014 and remains a prominent figure in Afghan politics. His father was the hereditary Khan (chief) of the Popalzai tribe in the Kandahar region. Karzai studied in Kabul and Simla, India in the 1970s. Tense relations with the ruling Taliban led to Karzai living in exile in Pakistan in the late 1990s but by October 2001, he was back in Afghanistan, playing a key role in the Taliban’s fall from power. He stepped into the position of interim president in 2002 and began a worldwide diplomatic effort to help rebuild Afghanistan’s government. Karzai became Afghanistan’s first popularly elected president in September 2004. He was elected to his second five-year term in 2009 after which which he stepped down and was succeeded by Ashraf Ghani.

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