Published: Thu, October 18, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Jabar Qahraman, Afghan election candidate, killed in explosion in campaign office

Jabar Qahraman, Afghan election candidate, killed in explosion in campaign office

Two US citizens were wounded and a local police chief killed, as Afghan guards opened fire at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and US forces commander in Afghanistan, Austin S. Miller after his meeting with Kandahar officials in the city.

Three senior Afghan officials were reported to be among the casualties, but there were conflicting accounts on whether they were killed or wounded.

The commander of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation mission to Afghanistan US General Scott Miller was in a meeting with the Afghan officials moments before the attack but was unharmed.

Taliban spokesman Zabihulla Mujahid said over social media that an "infiltrator" opened fire inside the governor's house during a meeting.

Several Afghan and worldwide security officials said Razeq, one of Afghanistan's most powerful commanders with a fearsome reputation as an enemy of the Taliban, had been killed. General Miller was safely evacuated form the area after the incident, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation said.

Col. Knut Peters, a Resolute Support spokesman said in a statement Thursday evening: "There was a situation at the Kandahar palace today".

Wahida Shakar, spokeswoman for the provincial governor in Parwan, said the attack occurred late on October 17 in the Bagram district.

Jabar Qahraman, Afghan election candidate, killed in explosion in campaign office

Officials were unable to immediately identify the attacker, although the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation press office in Kabul said initial reports suggest he is dead.

"General Miller is uninjured", he added.

He continued: "The incident will also make the military balance in southern Afghanistan considerably more fragile, as General Raziq was often at the forefront of government efforts to slow the Taliban's advances".

Qahraman is the 10th candidate killed in the past two months.

He was accused of abuses, including torturing Taliban inmates, but had brought reasonable security in Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban militants.

Violence has increased ahead of the long-delayed vote, with hundreds of people killed or wounded in poll-related attacks across the country.

The flamboyant commander, he had survived several attempts on his life over many years and narrowly escaped an attack last year in which five diplomats from the United Arab Emirates were killed in Kandahar.

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