Apr. 14 - Afghan MP Fawzia Koofi expects harsh and possibly violent opposition as her campaign gets underway to replace Hamid Karzai in the 2014 presidential elections. Nick Rowlands reports.
Afghan MP Fawzia Koofi is the first person to openly declare an intention to run in the country's 2014 presidential elections. The 36-year-old expects harsh opposition, threats of violence, and pressure on her family as her campaign gets underway to replace Hamid Karzai, who must step down that year after serving two consecutive terms in office. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FAWZIA KOOFI, MEMBER OF THE AFGHAN PARLIAMENT, SAYING: "There are certain traditional leaders who don't want to see the progress, so they will try to create problems for me. I am sure my campaign will be one of, I can say, one of the noisiest campaigns. I will have lots of troubles against me." The outspoken campaigner for women's rights in Afghanistan wants the country to become financially independent by harnessing the worth of its vast natural resources. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FAWZIA KOOFI, MEMBER OF THE AFGHAN PARLIAMENT, SAYING: "If Afghanistan is economically strong we could be a reliable partner to the world and a reliable country for our citizens, and that economic empowerment comes from our natural resources like our mines, right now the mines, the income from mines, unfortunately doesn't go to the income of the country it goes to the individual pocket." The 19th child of 23, Koofi was the first girl in her family to get an education. She was elected to parliament in 2005 and 2010, and survived an attempt on her life by the Taliban after becoming Afghanistan's first female deputy speaker. Nick Rowlands, Reuters.