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Afghan Lawmakers Dismiss Two More Ministers

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Afghanistan’s parliament has dismissed two more cabinet ministers because of poor performance, bringing the total number of ministers removed to five over two days.

Lawmakers voted to fire Education Minister Asadullah Hanif Balkhi and Transportation Minister Mohammadullah Batash on November 13.

The votes took place despite pleas from President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah to halt further action against the Western-backed government.

Ghani and Abdullah told lawmakers that “their decision will deal a huge political blow to the government at this critical time and urged them to stop the process,” said Mirdad Najrabi, chairman of parliament’s security commission.

On November 12, parliament dismissed three ministers, including Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani.

The dismissals come as Afghanistan is embroiled in an economic crisis and is struggling to rein in an emboldened Taliban insurgency.

They add to the troubles of the unity government, which was brokered following the disputed 2014 presidential elections but has since been weakened by infighting.

Based on reporting by Reuters and Khaama Press

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