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Paris honours assassinated Afghan rebel leader

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By Daniel Bellamy
Paris honours assassinated Afghan rebel leader
Copyright  أ ف ب

An Afghan rebel leader, who was assassinated after warning the European parliament of the dangers of Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden, has been honoured in Paris with a plaque recognising him as a hero of Afghanistan.

Ahmad Shah Massoud first visited Paris exactly 20 years ago, and on Saturday the city's mayor Anne Hidalgo was there to receive his son.

His father studied at a French lycee in Afghanistan, and in April 2001, he made his first visit to Europe.

He spoke to the European Parliament in Strasbourg, warning them about Al-Qaeda and bin Laden, just months before the September 11 terror attacks in the United States.

Two days before those attacks, Massoud was assassinated by Al-Qaeda.

Alongside other mujahideen, Massoud fought against the Soviet Union after it invaded Afghanistan in 1979.

After that he became known as "the Lion of Panjshir" for preventing the Soviet army - and later the Taliban - from occupying Afghanistan's Panjshir valley, which was mostly inhabited by fellow ethnic Tajiks.