[Presenter] The independent commission for drafting the constitution was officially inaugurated by His Majesty Mohammad Zaher Shah, father of the nation. Esteemed Hamed Karzai, head of the Transitional Islamic State of Afghanistan, was also present in the Golkhana palace.
The government press office reports to Bakhtar Information Agency:
The gathering was attended by deputy heads of the state, esteemed members of the royal family, members of the cabinet, the former president of Afghanistan, esteemed Sebghatollah Mojaddedi, esteemed Karim Aga Khan IV, the US president's special envoy, esteemed Zalmay Khalilzad, diplomatic directors in Kabul, the head and members of the commission for drafting the constitution, a number of lawyers and researchers and national and cultural characters.
At the beginning of the meeting, after the recitation of some verses from the Holy Koran, His Majesty Mohammad Zaher Shah, in his wise and judicious speech officially inaugurated the work of the constitution commission.
Part of His Majesty Mohammad Zaher Shah's message said: We are thankful to God for giving us the victory to save Afghanistan from the war and violent disaster and position it on the road to reconstruction and rehabilitation. The father of the nation in another part of his speech said: No community can continue its life without regulations. I hope the commission for drafting the constitution, using the Islamic way and democracy, will be able to set a standard to bring success and prosperity to the Afghan nation.
Then, the head of the independent commission for drafting the constitution, [Vice-President] Nematollah Shahrani, introduced members of the commission and said: I am happy that in the process of rebuilding Afghanistan we are inaugurating the commission for drafting the constitution.
According to another report, the head of the Transitional Islamic State of Afghanistan declared the official inauguration of the commission for drafting the constitution in front of a number of foreign and domestic journalists. Esteemed Karzai said that inaugurating and opening the work of the commission for drafting the constitution is a basic and important step towards strengthening peace and democracy in the country.
Hamed Karzai and Nematollah Shahrani spoke to the domestic and foreign journalists along these lines:
[Karzai] In the name of God, the most merciful, the most compassionate,
Today, a few minutes ago, his majesty, the father of the Afghan nation, officially inaugurated the commission for drafting the constitution of Afghanistan and afterwards his excellency Mr Shahrani, deputy head of the state and member of the commission, who will, God willing, work as the head of the constitution commission, introduced members of the commission and gave some information about the work of the commission.
To us, by the grace of Almighty God, it is a great pleasure that today we have been able to open a new page in Afghanistan and arrange a needed constitution for the nation and submit it to the nation of Afghanistan. Thank you. Now Mr Shahrani wants to express things to you.
[Shahrani] In the name of God, the most merciful, the most compassionate,
As part of the reconstruction of the Afghan nation we have inaugurated one of the important and rich improvements attended by his majesty the father of the nation, which is the constitution of Afghanistan. We, the members of the commission for drafting the constitution, believe that this constitution creates national unity in Afghanistan, guarantees the independence of Afghanistan and will bring social justice to Afghanistan. We, the members of the commission, consider the duty passed on to us as a deposit from God and from the Islamic 20-million nation of Afghanistan. We will draft it in the best way and then submit it back to its owner, which is the nation of Afghanistan. We understand the value of this national, historical and decisive document for Afghanistan in the current condition and with all the loyalty we have to the people of Afghanistan and our country we will draft it and for approval we will present it to the Loya Jerga officials. We congratulate the inauguration of the work of the commission for drafting the constitution for the nation of Afghanistan and I pray for more success from God for the members of the commission. Goodbye.
Source: Afghanistan Television, Kabul, in Pashto 1530 gmt 3 Nov 02