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Afghanistan: peace negotiator shot dead, four soldiers killed

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Afghanistan: peace negotiator shot dead, four soldiers killed


A top Afghan official negotiating a peace deal with the Taliban has been shot dead in Afghanistan’s capital Kabul.

Maulvi Arsala Rahmani, a former Taliban defector, was stuck in traffic when the occupant of a car beside him opened fire.

Rahmani was one of the most senior members of a group set up by President Hamid Karzai two years ago to liaise with insurgents.

The Taliban have denied involvement in his killing.

Earlier this year, Rahmani told the Reuters news agency that he thought peace talks had a good chance of success.

A friend Najibullah Habibyar paid tribute to Rahmani:

“Those who have done this are the enemy of Afghanistan, the enemy of peace and the enemy of Islam. Those people are against the stabilisation of Afghanistan, that is why they have killed our national, Islamic figure.”

Meanwhile two Afghan police officers shot dead a pair of British soldiers who had been mentoring them at a compound at Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. One of the attackers was later killed.

The shootings bring this year’s death toll in “green-on-blue” attacks – in which Afghan forces turn their weapons against their Western allies – to 22.

Two other NATO soldiers died on Saturday, one in a bomb blast and the other as a result of a “non-battle related injury,” said a NATO official.

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