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Survey: Graft Impeding Afghan Rebuilding

A newspaper vendor in Kabul (file photo). 15 June 2005 (RFE/RL) -- A U.S.-commissioned survey released on 14 June says corruption remains a major impediment to Afghanistan's reconstruction efforts.

The survey -- commissioned by the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) -- says Afghans support the central government of President Hamid Karzai, but "do not trust or rely on the local and provincial government due to widespread corruption."

The report says "local warlords -- particularly in the west, south, and east of Afghanistan -- continue to flout the rule of law and undermine governance."

The survey also said there is "no functioning, formal justice system" in Afghanistan, and that "individual rights are poorly understood and poorly protected, especially for women."

The report -- titled "Voices of a New Afghanistan" -- is based on 1,609 interviews conducted by a dozen Afghan researchers. CSIS is an independent public-policy organization.