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Anti-Taleban Alliance Names Interim Leader - 2001-09-14


Anti-Taleban forces in Afghanistan have named a temporary replacement for their wounded military chief, Ahmed Shah Masood.

Officials of the alliance say General Muhammad Fahim will take over while Mr. Masood recovers from an assassination attempt.

Mr. Masood was severely injured Sunday when two Arabs posing as journalists set off a bomb hidden in a video camera. His brother says Mr. Masood has awakened from a coma, but alliance officials say the leader is in critical condition.

It has not been revealed where Mr. Masood is receiving treatment for his injuries.

Meanwhile, General Fahim met Thursday with diplomats from countries that support the group's fight against the Taleban -- Russia, India, Iran, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. The meeting took place in the Tajik capital, Dushanbe.

Reuters News Agency quotes a Tajik official who said the diplomats discussed giving the anti-Taleban alliance military, technical and humanitarian assistance.

Ati-Taleban forces control only about five percent of Afghan territory, mostly in the north.

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