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Afghanistan president awaits high court ruling on foreign minister dismissal

[JURIST] A spokesman for Afghan President Hamid Karzai [official website] said Saturday that Karzai would await a Supreme Court [Wikipedia backgrounder] ruling on the legality of parliament dismissing government ministers before relieving Foreign Minister Rangeen Dadfar Spanta [official profile] after Spanta lost a no-confidence vote. A previous effort to oust Spanta on Thursday failed by a narrow margin, but parliament did vote that day to remove Repatriation and Refugee Minister Mohammad Akbar Akbar. Karzai, who accepted Akbar's dismissal, has asked the high court to decide whether parliament can force out a minister on a matter not directly related to his portfolio.

Both ministers came under fire for not doing more to oppose the expulsion of thousands of Afghan refugees from neighboring Iran [RFE/RL reports]. The refugees are now living in an Afghan border province but have no shelter. Some 2 million Afghan refugees remain in Iran. AP has more.

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