Accessibility links

Afghan MP Escapes Assassination Attempt in Kabul

  • Sean Maroney

Afghan policemen gather at the site of an attack on lawmaker Abdul Rab Rasoul Sayaf in the Khaja Musafer area of Paghman district on the outskirts of Kabul, 20 Nov 2009

Afghan policemen gather at the site of an attack on lawmaker Abdul Rab Rasoul Sayaf in the Khaja Musafer area of Paghman district on the outskirts of Kabul, 20 Nov 2009

Five bodyguards were killed. Earlier in the day, a suicide bomber killed at least 16 people in southwestern Afghanistan, while two roadside bombs killed 4 others in eastern Afghanistan.

Afghan police say a member of parliament escaped an assassination attempt Friday night near Kabul. Five bodyguards were killed. Earlier in the day, a suicide bomber killed at least 16 people in southwestern Afghanistan, while two roadside bombs killed 4 others in eastern Afghanistan.

An Afghan district police chief tells VOA that a remote-controlled bomb targeted the convoy of Abdul Rab Rasoul Sayyaf as it moved along roads outside the capital.

Sayyaf is an influential member of parliament from Kabul province and a former warlord. This was not the first attempt on his life. Sayyat has survived at least one other similar attack.

Sayyaf was one of the ex-mujahideen leaders who fought against the Taliban in the mid-1990s. He became a strong supporter of Afghan President Hamid Karzai's government and the international forces after the U.S.-led invasion toppled the Taliban government in 2001.

Meanwhile, Afghan officials say the suicide bomber in southwestern Afghanistan was on a motorcycle and targeted a busy area of Farah city, the capital of Farah province.

The provincial governor, Rohullah Amin, tells VOA that the blast occurred near his compound and shattered his office's windows.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but Amin says these incidents are the hallmark of the Taliban insurgency that has strengthened in recent months.

Friday's violence comes a day after Hamid Karzai was sworn in for a second term as president. During his inaugural address, Mr. Karzai encouraged militants who do not have ties with international terrorism to work with his government in reconstructing Afghanistan.

Amin says that while he agrees with President Karzai's offer of peace, it will never work if the attacks do not stop.

"The Taliban who kill the same as like today, I think it will be difficult for the Afghan nation to accept those who are killing Afghan people," he said.

President Karzai also said he will work to transfer the leading role for security from international forces to the Afghan army by the end of his five-year term.

Amin says he believes that could be possible but not without more Afghan security force members.

This year has been the deadliest for international troops in Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban-led government in 2001.

XS
SM
MD
LG