Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Afghanistan: Eric Holder arrives in Kabul - "Fighting corruption and supporting the rule of law in Afghanistan are top priorities"

Attorney General Eric Holder arrived in Kabul, Afghanistan today for meetings with Afghan and U.S. officials. The Attorney General will discuss the Department's ongoing efforts to foster the rule of law in Afghanistan and how the two countries can build lasting relationships between law enforcement agencies and prosecutors.

"Fighting corruption and supporting the rule of law in Afghanistan are top priorities for this Administration, and we will continue to assist the Afghan government in creating and sustaining the effective criminal justice system to which the Afghan people are entitled," Attorney General Holder said.

Department attorneys located in Kabul provide training, mentoring and guidance to the Criminal Justice Task Force, a team of Afghan prosecutors and police investigators responsible for the investigation and prosecution of significant narcotics and narcotics-related (such as corruption and money laundering) offenses before the Central Narcotics Tribunal. The Tribunal has exclusive nationwide jurisdiction for all major narcotics and narcotics-related corruption cases. DOJ attorneys also advise and mentor Afghan prosecutors and investigators in the Attorney General's Anti-Corruption Unit and Major Crimes Task Force. DOJ attorneys provide advice and assistance in the development of criminal laws and procedures for Afghanistan and offer operational advice and assistance to the U.S. law enforcement agencies posted in Afghanistan.

DEA agents located in Afghanistan work to establish the drug enforcement institutions and capabilities needed to enforce the rule of law in Afghanistan, including successfully identifying, disrupting, and dismantling major drug trafficking organizations that fuel the insurgency and profit from the narco-economy. In addition, FBI agents in Afghanistan support counterterrorism efforts and intelligence gathering as well as Afghanistan's Major Crimes Task Force, which focuses on anti-kidnapping, anti-corruption, and other organized crime. Personnel from the United States Marshals Service advise and train Afghanistan's Judicial Security Unit on witness and judicial security.

At the conclusion of his meetings, the first for an Attorney General in Afghanistan, the Attorney General will return to Washington.

Source: U.S. Department of Justice