Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Afghan peace council head killed by Taliban 'Peace Negotiator'

From Reuters:
A Taliban suicide bomber on Tuesday killed Burhanuddin Rabbani, former Afghan president and head of a council tasked with trying to negotiate a political end to the war, in what analysts called a blow to [so-called] peace efforts.

The killing underscored doubts over the ability of fledgling Afghan security forces to protect even the most prominent politicians as U.S.-led forces ready to pull out by 2014.

"A Taliban member who went to Rabbani's house (in the heavily guarded diplomatic enclave) for peace talks detonated a bomb hidden in his turban," a statement by the Kabul police chief's office said...

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed responsibility, saying that the killer had gone to Rabbani's home for talks.

"As soon as Rabbani came three steps forward to hug Mohammad Masoom, he triggered his explosive-filled jacket killing Rabbani..."

Commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, General John R. Allen, called the killing "another outrageous indicator that, regardless of what Taliban leadership outside the country say, they do not want peace, but rather war".