Foreign Policy Blogs

Former Afghan Finance Minister: "UN agencies should shut down in Afghanistan."

Former Afghan Finance Minister and presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani was highly critical of United Nations operations in Afghanistan, lamenting what he said was a lack of transparency. “The UN should shut down in Afghanistan,” he said on a panel about the country’s future. “They are not transparent, they are not accountable, they are not responsive.” Ghani called for greater accountability of UN staff, demanding that “someone should be fired.” Check out the video below, ore read more on the Atlantic Council blog.

UPDATE:  UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Responds

Ban Ki-moon

Ban Ki-moon

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon responded to Ghani’s criticism when asked to comment by Atlantic Council President and CEO Fred Kempe.  Ghani’s remarks, said Ban, were linked to the security situation in Afghanistan, which has not allowed the United Nations to “operate coherently” at times, which he said was also a concern of  Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

Karzai, said Ban, had asked that “the United Nations system work as one” and that the world body deliver in a more coherent manner.

“I understand the concern,” said Ban, adding that the UN would “continue to work closely” with the Afghan government in both the short and long term.



Robert Nolan

Robert Nolan is Editor-in-Chief of New Media at the Foreign Policy Association and a writer and producer of the Great Decisions Television Series on PBS. A former Peace Corps volunteer in Zimbabwe and graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, he has interviewed numerous heads of state, Nobel Prize winners, artists and musicians, and policymakers.