Senators call for Iranian envoy to leave Kabul
09 May, 2012
KABUL: Afghanistan senators called for the dismissal of Iran's Ambassador to Afghanistan on Tuesday as tensions continue to flare over what the country's politicians have labeled "clear interference" from Iran.
Senators called for the Iranian Ambassador Abul Fazel Zuhrawand to leave Afghanistan during Tuesday's morning session after his reported request for Afghan lawmakers to not approve the Afghanistan-US strategic pact, ToloNews reported Tuesday.
The Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs has summoned Zuhrawand for questioning on Tuesday over his request, according to the Senators.
Afghan senators said that Zuhrawand had met the head of the Afghan Senate Fazel Hadi Muslimyar and asked him not to approve the Afghan-US agreement as it is a threat against regional countries.
It comes as Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said that Iran was concerned the strategic pact may destabilise the region, and called for foreign troops to withdraw from the country as soon as possible.
The long-term strategic agreement between Afghanistan and the US was thrashed out over 18 months and signed last week by Afghan President Hamid Karzai and US President Barack Obama; however, it requires Parliamentary approval to be formally enacted.
It is intended to cover the Afghan-US relationship for 10 years after the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan in 2014. It does not specify a US military presence.