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Hamid Karzai: A Presidency In Pictures

Hamid Karzai has been the leader of Afghanistan for almost 13 years, since shortly after the U.S.-led invasion of the country in late 2001. He was constitutionally barred from seeking a third term in office and so did not run in the May 2014 election. His successor had been due to be sworn in by September 2, but an ongoing fraud dispute between the two candidates -- Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani -- has meant Karzai has remained in office until the dispute is resolved. Karzai says he will retire, not to a mansion built on the grounds of the presidential palace but to a more modest home in Kabul, a move made, it is thought, to address fears he would continue to wield influence over Afghan politics even after he left office.
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A 28-year-old Hamid Karzai (top right) is pictured during a three-month journalism course he took in Lille, France, in 1985.
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A 28-year-old Hamid Karzai (top right) is pictured during a three-month journalism course he took in Lille, France, in 1985.

Karzai (top row, second from left) is photographed with other journalism classmates in Lille, France, in 1985. He returned to Pakistan to serve as director of information for the National Liberation Front.
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Karzai (top row, second from left) is photographed with other journalism classmates in Lille, France, in 1985. He returned to Pakistan to serve as director of information for the National Liberation Front.

A mustachioed Karzai in a 2001 file photo, shortly before he was named on December 5 of that year as chaiman of the Afghan interim administration during a UN-sponsored conference in Bonn, Germany.
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A mustachioed Karzai in a 2001 file photo, shortly before he was named on December 5 of that year as chaiman of the Afghan interim administration during a UN-sponsored conference in Bonn, Germany.

U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld (right) meets with Karzai at Bagram air base outside Kabul on December 16, 2001, six days before Karzai took the oath of office as chairman of the Afghan interim administration. Rumsfeld had arrived at Bagram for a surprise visit, the first by a senior U.S. official to Afghanistan since U.S.-led strikes began against the Taliban in October 2001.
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U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld (right) meets with Karzai at Bagram air base outside Kabul on December 16, 2001, six days before Karzai took the oath of office as chairman of the Afghan interim administration. Rumsfeld had arrived at Bagram for a surprise visit, the first by a senior U.S. official to Afghanistan since U.S.-led strikes began against the Taliban in October 2001.

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