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Afghanistan: Karzai Moves To Stop Factional Violence

Kabul, 2 February 2002 (RFE/RL) -- Afghan interim leader Hamid Karzai has established a special committee to investigate violence between rival factions, which threatens the country's stability. Karzai returned to Kabul today following a six-day trip to the United States and Britain. AFP reports that the new nine-member commission is headed by Border Affairs Minister Amanullah Zadran.

The first task of the committee will be to investigate recent fighting in eastern Paktia province between supporters and opponents of the newly appointed governor. The fighting earlier this week left at least 60 dead.

Allies of the newly appointed governor, Padshah Khan, told AP today that his fighters are re-arming for another clash, soon after being forced to retreat from the provincial capital of Gardez by rival town leaders.

Khan's brother, Wazir Khan, told the news agency today that the new governor's opponents "killed 11 of our people, we buried them, and tomorrow we will begin fighting again."