by Abdullah Qazi / October 16, 2008
Ahmad Wali Karzai is President Hamid Karzai’s younger brother. He is currently the chairman of the provincial council in Kandahar. He is a very influential figure in the south and was chosen as a representative of Kandahar province for the 2002 and 2004 Loya Jirgas. For many years now, various Afghan political figures have either hinted at or have openly accused Wali Karzai of being involved in Afghanistan’s illegal heroin trade. The former interior minister Taj Mohammad Wardak told a British paper that while there is no direct proof, everyone knows that Wali Karzai is involved in the drug trade. In early October 2008, the New York Times reported that two unnamed American officials said that the Bush Administration believes that Wali Karzai is involved in drug trafficking. After publication of the New York Times report, Wali Karzai immediately called a news conference and strongly denied that he has ever been involved in the illegal drug trade. Wali Karzai suggested to the Associated Press that the American officials are fabricating allegations to retaliate against President Karzai because of his criticism of civilian casualties.