[QODLink]
Central & South Asia

Afghan bomber targets vice president hopeful

Mohammad Ismail Khan, a running mate of warlord Abdul Rasul Sayyaf, survives attempted assassination in Herat City.

Last updated: 24 Jan 2014 11:46
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Mohammad Ismail Khan (right), pictured with current president Hamid Karzai [AFP]

A suicide bomber has attempted to assassinate a vice presidential candidate in western Afghanistan.

The Friday attack was said to have targeted Mohammad Ismail Khan, a vice presidential candidate for Abdul Rasul Sayyaf and former water and energy minister. 

Ismail Khan was in a car leaving a mosque after Friday prayers in the heart of Herat City when the bomber, said to be in his seventies, detonated his explosives.

Local police and the ministry of interior report no casualties or injuries other than the bomber himself.

No group has said it carried out the attempt on Ismail Khan's life.

Friday's attack comes after the Independent Election Commission announced the final stages of efforts to recruit monitors for the April 5 presidential and provincial council elections. The Taliban, Afghanistan's largest armed opposition group, has released several statements discrediting the ballots vowing to attack them. 

Ismail Khan and Sayyaf, both former rebel commanders during the fight against Soviet occupation and later the civil war, have been labeled warlords by segments of Afghan society. Human rights groups have accused both men of rights abuses.

Sayyaf, said to be a primary link between Arab fighters — including Osama bin Laden and Khaled Sheikh Mohammed - and the Afghan mujhaideen is considered to be one of the leading candidates for the presidency.

The April 5 polls will mark the first time that Hamid Karzai, the incumbent, will not stand for elections after more than 13 years in power. 

246

Source:
Al Jazeera
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Your chance to be an investigative journalist in Al Jazeera’s new interactive game.
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Featured
Private citizens take initiative to help 'irregular' migrants, accusing governments of excessive focus on security.
Indonesia's cassava plantations are being killed by mealybugs, and thousands of wasps will be released to stop them.
Violence in Ain al-Arab has prompted many Kurdish Syrians to flee to Turkey, but others are returning to battle ISIL.
Unelected representatives quietly iron out logistics of massive TPP and TTIP deals among US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.
Led by students concerned for their future with 'nothing to lose', it remains to be seen who will blink first.