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Afghan Defense Minister Resigns After Parliamentary Censure

Outgoing Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim

Outgoing Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim

Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak has resigned. He had lost a no-confidence vote in parliament last week over handling security and being relegated to an acting role by President Hamid Karzai.

Wardak, one of the country's two key security ministers together with Interior Minister Bismillah Mohammadi, told reporters he respected parliament's decision, which could complicate NATO's plans to hand security responsibilities over to Afghan forces before the end of 2014.

The parliament voted on August 4 to remove Wardak and Mohammadi after recent assassinations of senior officials by insurgents, as well as cross-border shelling incidents blamed on Pakistan.

Based on reporting by Reuters and

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