New York: A former United Nations (UN) ambassador to Afghanistan has questioned the ‘mental stability’ of Afghan President Hamid Karzai and suggested that he may be using drugs.
Peter Galbraith, the former deputy head of the UN mission in Afghanistan, has made the allegations concerning Karzai in a classified UN report about life in the presidential palace in Kabul.
According to The Times, the report detailed the President’s likes, his dislikes, whom he trusts within his inner circle and how he relaxes.
The report was compiled by Western analysts at the personal instigation of Galbraith during his brief tenure in Kabul.
“He’s prone to tirades. He can be very emotional, act impulsively,” The Times quoted Galbraith, as saying.
“In fact, some of the palace insiders say that he has a certain fondness for some of Afghanistan’s most profitable exports,” he added in an apparent reference to opium or heroin.
Afghanistan is well known for its bumper opium harvest, much of which is converted into heroin before being exported.
Although the allegations are unlikely to cause stir in Afghanistan, where smoking drugs is as common as having a drink after work, it will raise further questions about Karzai’s state of mind days after a series of outbursts against the West of rigging last year’s Presidential Election in Afghanistan, and suggesting that he might even join the Taliban.
Karzai’s speech, coming just days after US President Barack Obama visited him in Kabul, laid bare the deep mistrust between the leaders and their governments even as the United States has tripled its troop commitment since the start of 2009 to fight the Taliban and al Qaeda.