President Ashraf Ghani reportedly barred a member of the Afghan parliament, Khan Agha Rezayee, from taking a trip to Istanbul to participate in the “Border Security & Global Terrorism Conference” with a delegation of several other Afghan lawmakers.
Rezayee described Ghani’s move as ‘politically motivated.’
Ghani’s government has said that the action was a routine administrative decision.
“The honorable president wanted to get revenge in some way after we refused to join his State Building team (Ghani’s campaign team),” added Rezayee.
“Whenever there is the issue of trips, there are some technical and administrative processes which are assessed by the relevant experts and then they are signed. This is neither an election issue nor an issue of revenge,” said Latif Mahmoud, advisor at the Government Media Center.
“It looks a bit authoritarian when you bar someone from participating in a conference,” said legal expert Wahid Farzayee.
Lawmakers warn that such approaches within the system will increase mistrust and political opposition to the government.