Crafting a Constitution for Afghanistan

Issue Date July 2004
Volume 15
Issue 3
Page Numbers 5-19
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On 4 January 2004, Afghanistan approved a new constitution that represents a key step forward in its political reconstruction. This article analyzes the crafting of the new Afghan basic law, from the Bonn Accords in December 2001 to the January 2004 Constitutional Loya Jirga. It discusses the obstacles overcome and the compromises made as this multiethnic country laid down the foundation for democratic government. The author also discusses whether this new constitution will enable the country to surmount the many challenges that lie ahead.

About the Author

Barnett R. Rubin is director of studies and senior fellow at the Center on International Cooperation of New York University. In late 2001, he advised UN Special Representative for Afghanistan Lakhdar Brahimi during the talks that led to the Bonn Accords. Rubin’s books include The Fragmentation of Afghanistan: State Formation and Collapse in the International System (2nd ed., 2002).

View all work by Barnett R. Rubin