Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Head of Afghanistan’s High Peace Council and Former President Burhanuddin Rabbani Killed

KABUL: Former Afghan President and the head of Afghanistan’s High Peace Council, Burhanuddin Rabbani, who had been tasked with trying to negotiate a political end to the war, was killed early on Tuesday evening, according to a senior police officer. 

Burhanuddin Rabbani's home was in Kabul’s heavily guarded diplomatic enclave, and the attack came just a week after a 20-hour siege at the edge of the area sometimes known as the “green zone”. 

Hashmatullah Stanikzai, spokesman for Kabul’s police chief, said it was “probably” a suicide attack.

Rabbani was formerly leader of a powerful mujahideen party during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s and served as president in the 1990s when mujahideen factions waged war for control of the country after the Soviet withdrawal. 

The assassination comes a week after a 20-hour gun and grenade attack that on Kabul’s diplomatic enclave by insurgents, and three suicide bomb attacks on other parts of the city together the longest-lasting and most wide-ranging assault on the city. 

Last week’s siege was the third major attack on the Afghan capital since June and included three suicide bombing in other parts of the city.

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