More 'blue Helmets' Are Arriving In Kabul

A 100-men-strong group of UN peacemakers is expected to arrive in Kabul today, said Shamsulkhaq Aryanfar, an Afghan diplomat in Dushanbe. He said that 100 British peacekeepers have already been deployed in Bagram, and 186 French soldiers guarded the airport and other facilities in Mazar-i-Sharif. The bulk of the UN contingent - around 3,000 troops - will arrive in Afghanistan after acting president Rabbani formally hands over his powers to Khamid Karzai, head of the new provisional government, Aryanfar said. According to him, "the deployment of the UN peacemaking forces will promote stabilisation in the country and will play a crucial role in its post-war reconstruction." At the same time, the Afghan diplomat noted, "Afghanistan's major problem at the moment is disarmament of various groupings opposed to each other".

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