Kabul Bank at Center of a Mob
Kabul Bank may be adding itself to the ranks of other troubled banks throughout the world.
Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai has banned transfers of government funds from the bank, according to The Washington Post.
The government is attempting to quell fears that Kabul Bank is about to collapse, but the measure did not spot more than 500 government workers from mobbing the last Kabul Bank branch to remain open before a four-day national holiday celebrating the end of Ramadan, the newspaper reported Wednesday.
Last week, the government had backed the bank, with Karzai saying Even if the whole financial system in Afghanistan collapses, we have enough money to support it.
Despite these attempts to comfort citizens, the mob scene grew unruly, with shoving back and forth and punches thrown between workers demanding their pay some of them police officers and soldiers and National Directorate of Security officers, who were trying to control the crowd.
"This is shameful that these simple police officers are beating up more high-ranking officers. We are educated people, not animals. We need to get our salaries but I am standing out here unable to get my salary," said policeman Abdul Hanan, as he tried to collect his monthly pay.
The Central Bank of Afghanistan forced the banks top two executives to resign last week with allegations the executives engaged in risky speculation and approved of secret loans.
Since then, depositors have withdrawn more than $250 million, despite statements from the government that the bank was sound.
Karzai blmed the run on the bank on the Western press, which he said has been covering [the banks troubles] in a negative and provocative way.