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Senior Afghan peace negotiator shot dead in Kabul

05-14-2012 08:01 BJT

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A senior Afghan peace negotiator has been shot dead in the capital Kabul. The killing of Arsala Rahmani deals another blow to the Afghan government’s attempts to negotiate a peace deal with the Taliban.

Arsala Rahmani was shot dead at a traffic intersection, by an assassin armed with a silenced pistol.

The 68 year old was one of the most senior members of Afghanistan’s High Peace Council - set up by President Hamid Karzai two years ago to liaise with insurgents.

A senior Afghan peace negotiator Arsala Rahmani.

No one has been arrested over Sunday’s attack in Kabul and the Taliban have denied any involvement.

The shooting has been strongly condemned by the government.

Afghan presidential spokesman Aimal Faizi said, "This is shocking news for the Afghan people, for the government of Afghanistan and for the president. The Afghan government strongly condemns this attack. Arsala Rahmani has been killed by enemies of Afghanistan. The killers are enemies of peace and stability."

Both NATO and the US embassy in Kabul have also condemned the assassination.

Rahmani was one of about 70 influential Afghans and former Taliban members appointed to the High Peace Council. Its aim is to convince insurgent leaders to reconcile with the government.

But the Taliban have so far refused direct contact with the council, which they see as being too close to Hamid Karzai’s government.

With the war now in its 11th year, the council appears to be making little progress.

The killing strikes yet another blow to efforts to find a political resolution.

Afghan National Army soldiers secure the gate of the military hospital after Arsala
Rahmani, a former Taliban official turned Afghan peace negotiator, was killed by an
unknown attacker in western Kabul, Sunday, May 13, 2012.

An Afghan National Army soldier patrols the gate of the military hospital next to an
ambulance in Kabul, Afghanistan, Sunday, May 13, 2012.




Editor:Zhang Rui |Source: CNTV.CN

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