Afghan Police, Intelligence Chiefs Killed In Shooting Attack


The police chief, Abdul Raziq, was reportedly killed at the governor's office.
The police chief, Abdul Raziq, was reportedly killed at the governor’s office.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the October 18 assault that came just two days before parliamentary elections.

Afghan officials told RFE/RL’s Radio Free Afghanistan that a bodyguard opened fire after a meeting in the governor’s compound between senior Afghan and U.S. security officials.

The powerful police chief of Kandahar, General Abdul Raziq, and the provincial intelligence head, Abdul Momin, were shot and killed, they said.

There were conflicting reports about the fate of governor Zalmai Wesa, with several lawmakers saying all three men had been killed.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in a short speech confirmed the deaths of the police and intelligence chiefs, but didn’t mention the governor.

NATO Resolute Support spokesman Grant Neely told RFE/RL that the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, General Scott Miller, was present at the meeting but was unhurt.

Colonel Dave Butler, a spokesman for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, said “three Americans were wounded, have been medically evacuated and are stable.”

USFOR-A Spokesman, Col Dave Butler

@USFOR_A

Update on the Kandahar palace today. This was an Afghan-on-Afghan incident. Three Americans were wounded, have been medically evacuated and are stable.
General Miller is uninjured. We are being told the area is secure. The attacker is dead. Send queries to our press desk.

Butler said the gunman had been killed and that Afghan officials were the “target of the violence.”

The Taliban claimed responsibility in a statement, saying, “The brutal police chief of Kandahar has been killed along several other officials.”

“The target was General Miller and General Raziq,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said on Twitter.

An Afghan journalist working for state media was also killed, according to NAI, a group supporting open media in the country.

Fearsome Reputation

Raziq was one of Afghanistan’s most powerful commanders with a fearsome reputation as an enemy of the Taliban.

A close ally of the U.S. military, Raziq, has been credited with pacifying large swaths of Kandahar but has been accused by human rights groups of gross human rights violations, including forcible disappearances, torture, and extrajudicial killings.

No media source currently available

WATCH: Afghan Women Seek Change Via Ballot Box

Afghanistan is on high alert ahead of the long-delayed parliamentary elections on October 20, after the Taliban pledged to block the vote.

More than 2,500 candidates are competing for 249 seats in the lower house of parliament.

The run-up to the elections has been marred by deadly militant attacks and targeted killings of candidates, 10 of whom have been killed so far.

With reporting by Reuters and AFP

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