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Former Taleban Foreign Minister to Run for Parliament

The foreign minister of the ousted Taleban regime in Afghanistan has decided to run for a seat in September's parliamentary elections.

The election commission says Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil has nominated himself to run for a seat from the former Taleban stronghold of Kandahar in southern Afghanistan.

Mr. Muttawakil was considered by many as a moderate element in the ousted regime. He surrendered to U.S. troops after the fall of the Taleban in late 2001.

After 18 months in custody, he was released by the U.S. military in October, 2003.

Last year, Afghan President Hamid Karzai offered an olive branch to rank-and-file Taleban fighters, inviting them to join the political process. But he said his offer is not for those hardcore militants who are wanted for human rights violations.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and AP.