Afghan President Hamid Karzai has appointed Mohammad User Daudzai as the country's new interior minister, officials have said.

Daudzai, Afghanistan's ambassador to Pakistan, succeeds Mujtaba Patang, who was dismissed by parliament in July amid charges of rising insecurity and mounting corruption within his ministry.

Daudzai, who was also a former chief of staff to Karzai, announced earlier this month that he would be a "probable" candidate in the presidential election due next April.

Karzai, who is barred from seeking a third term, has said he will not back any particular candidate in the race, but Daudzai is seen as one of his closest aide.

Karzai also appointed Kabul police chief General Ayoub Salangi as Daudzai's deputy.

The announcements came a day after Karzai appointed senior security official Rahmatullah Nabil as the acting head of the Afghan intelligence agency, the National Directorate of Security (NDS).

Both Daudzai and Nabil will have two months in the job and will require parliamentary approval to stay on longer, according to the Afghan constitution.

Source: Agencies