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Afghan President Appoints Dostum Chief Of Staff

Prague, 2 March 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Afghan President Hamid Karzai yesterday appointed a regional commander, General Abdul Rashid Dostum, as his personal military adviser.

Presidential spokesman Jawed Ludin said Dostum has been named chief of staff to the commander in chief -- a post held by Karzai.

Dostum's forces in northern Afghanistan helped the U.S. military oust the Taliban in late 2001.

Dostum came fourth in last October's presidential poll. In January, he narrowly escaped injury when a suicide bomber blew himself up in Dostum's hometown of Shiberghan.

(RFE/RL's Afghan Service/Reuters)