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Ahmed Wali Karzai: ‘The stories are very hurtful. The only thing I haven’t been accused of is prostitution’

If you believe his critics, Ahmed Wali Karzai is a corrupt gangster who has allowed the Taliban to flourish but remains untouchable because he is the President’s brother. But, in a rare interview, he tells Kim Sengupta that his hands are clean

Ahmed Wali Karzai has a letter to prove that he is not a drug trafficker with a private army who runs Kandahar in the manner of a Mafia don. “It has taken years to get this, but here it is, and it shows that these accusations against me are false, baseless,” he declared.

The letter from the US Drugs Enforcement Agency gives an assurance, Mr Karzai told The Independent, that he is not the subject of narcotics investigations. It will be made public in Kabul at a press conference in the near future by his half-brother, the Afghan President. “Then, perhaps, all these stories, which are very hurtful, will stop. I have been accused of so many things that I have begun to forget them. The only thing I have not been accused of so far is prostitution.”

Much of the vilification , maintains Mr Karzai, came from his political enemies in Afghanistan. He is bemused by what he considers to be hypocrisy by some Western officials. American and British intelligence, he points out, have had no compunction about seeking his help when acting against narcotics barons and the Taliban.

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