Afghan presidential hopeful Omar Daudzai promoted as interior minister
KABUL (AFP) - Probable presidential candidate Omar Daudzai was appointed as Afghanistan's acting interior minister on Sunday, putting him in a high-profile public role seven months before the country's first democratic transfer of power.
Mr Daudzai will move back to Kabul from Islamabad, where he has been ambassador to Pakistan since 2011 during a time of fractious ties between the two rivals and neighbours.
Last month, Mr Daudzai, a former chief of staff to President Hamid Karzai, set up an office in Kabul and announced that he would be a "probable" candidate in the elections due on April 5. Mr Karzai, who is barred from standing for a third term, has said he will not back any runner in the wide-open race, but Mr Daudzai is seen as one of his closest associates and loyalists.
Mr Daudzai, 55, from Afghanistan's biggest ethnic group the Pashtuns, was a member of the Hezb-e-Islami faction during the Soviet occupation and later went on to work for the United Nations.