Turban bomb kills key Afghan political leader
Former Afghan president Burhanuddin Rabbani is shown in a 2008 photo.
September 20th, 2011
01:46 PM ET

Turban bomb kills key Afghan political leader

[Update 1:51 p.m. ET] NATO's International Security Assistance Force said two suicide bombers detonated themselves in the attack that killed Afghanistan peace council leader Burhanuddin Rabbani at his home in Kabul on Tuesday afternoon.

Afghan officials earlier said there was one bomber. That attacker, who claimed to be a Taliban member who had come for talks about peace and reconciliation, hid the explosive device inside his turban, said Hasmat Stanikzai, spokesman for Kabul police.

Rabbani was president of Afghanistan before the Taliban deposed him in 1996, and he had been heading the largest political party standing in opposition to Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Rabbani was long considered crucial to Afghan and coalition efforts to bring Taliban leaders into the reconciliation process.

[Update 1:46 p.m. ET] Afghan President Hamid Karzai called Burhanuddin Rabbani's killing a "very tragic loss" for his country.

Speaking at the United Nations in New York, where world leaders are preparing to speak to the U.N. General Assembly this week, Karzai described Rabbani as "an Afghan patriot" who "has sacrificed his life for the sake of Afghanistan and for the peace of our country."

[Update 1:21 p.m. ET] The suicide bombing that killed Afghanistan peace council leader Burhanuddin Rabbani in Kabul on Tuesday afternoon shows that the Taliban don't want peace with the Afghan government, said Gen. John R. Allen, commander of NATO's International Security Assistance Force.

"This is another outrageous indicator that, regardless of what Taliban leadership outside the country say, they do not want peace, but rather war," Allen said in a statement released Tuesday. "Their only goal with this completely immoral act is to turn the clock back to the darkness synonymous with the Taliban movement.

A suicide bombing killed Rabbani and wounded council official Masoom Stanikzai and three others at Rabbani's home in Kabul, Afghan authorities said. The attack happened when a meeting was due to take place between Rabbani and a delegation representing the Taliban insurgency.

The suicide bomber claimed to be a Taliban member who had come for the talks about peace and reconciliation, and detonated the explosives as he entered the home, said Hasmat Stanikzai, spokesman for Kabul police.

"Our condolences go out to the families of Prof. Rabbani and Minister Stanikzai," Allen said. "We will continue to work closely with our Afghan partners in our march toward peace, and to hold those responsible for this heinous act accountable for their crimes against the people of Afghanistan."

[Update 12:57 p.m. ET] The suicide bomber who killed Afghanistan peace council leader Burhanuddin Rabbani and wounded one of Rabbani's top advisers on Tuesday had hidden the explosive device in his turban, Kabul police spokesman Hasmat Stanikzai has confirmed.

The attack happened at Rabbani's home in Kabul as he was meeting with Taliban elements that he believed wanted reconciliation, a senior official with NATO's International Security Assistance Force said earlier.

Four other people were wounded, including Masoom Stanikzai, the peace council's secretary and a key adviser to Rabbani, the police spokesman said.

[Update 12:10 p.m. ET] Burhanuddin Rabbani, the head of Afghanistan's peace council who authorities said was killed in a suicide bombing at his house in Kabul Tuesday, was meeting with Taliban elements he believed wanted reconciliation when the attack happened, a senior ISAF official said.

Rabbani, a former president of Afghanistan, was "known for welcoming others in the traditional way," the official said. "We don't know if the visitors were even checked for weapons."

A top Rabbani adviser, Masoom Stanekzai, is believed to be badly wounded, a senior ISAF official told CNN. A doctor at a 400-bed hospital in Kabul said that two other people - a bodyguard and an assistant to Rabbani - also were injured.

[Update 11:52 a.m. ET] Tuesday's attack that killed Burhanuddin Rabbani - a former Afghan president who headed Afghanistan's High Peace Council - was a suicide bombing inside his home in Kabul, said Mohammad Zahir, chief of investigations for Kabul police.

The bomber arrived at Rabbani's house at the same time a meeting was due to take place between Rabbani and a delegation representing the Taliban insurgency, an Afghan intelligence source told CNN.

The same source said it was unclear how the bomber got inside the house, but the bomber detonated a device that was concealed within his turban.

[Update 10:51 a.m. ET] Burhanuddin Rabbani, a key political figure in Afghanistan, was killed in an attack on his home Tuesday, a member of Afghanistan's peace council said.  The attack on the home triggered temporary lockdowns at the U.S. Embassy and headquarters of NATO's International Security Assistance Force as authorities investigated the sound of an explosion and what the target had been.

Rabbani, a former Afghan president, headed the country's High Peace Council.

[Update 10:45 a.m. ET] Personnel at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, were instructed to take cover Tuesday due to an incident outside the embassy's perimeter, an embassy spokesman said. It appears the embassy was not the target of the incident, the spokesman said.

soundoff (311 Responses)
  1. Sal

    You cannot win there, if you don't believe me just ask the Russians....... Eventually we will pull out of there with no change to that country.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mullah dadulah

    talibans rock!no peace for the traitors.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • @Mullah

      You deserve to live in a catbox.

      September 20, 2011 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Frank

      I keep hearing that they practice a religion of Peace. Yet they don't want Peace. Oh well when you stand before what you think is good I hope you notice the flames of hell....because this wasn't the actions of anyone that believes in God. And it's not heaven and the 72 virgins your going get.

      September 20, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. chuckmartel

    Bomb in turban? The muzzies keep trying to kill some Scandanavian cartoonists because of some turban cartoons. I guess the religion of peace has a problem with the truth.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Slider

    Nice, a bomb in his turban ...and the hajis were up in arms over a cartoon illustrating the same thing.

    Let the animals kill each other – I really no longer care.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • jmuhr

      It's sad that you don't care any more, because an innocent person was killed who was trying to make peace. It wasn't his fault.

      September 20, 2011 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  5. MRGRK

    now that's using your head.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • unowhoitsme

      I need to think that one over!

      September 20, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Thayer


    September 20, 2011 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob

      Uh, it was us that started this particular war.

      September 20, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thayer

      OK there Bobamed.

      September 20, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Moohammed wears a bomb on his head

    The funny part of this is it reminds me of a cartoon of Moohamed wearing a bomb as a turban on his head. What ever happened to that cartoon? It is sooooo apropos.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Alfredo

    Bomb in his turban? Hmmmmm. These people wear too much clothing to conceal their bombs. They love to blow themselves up!

    September 20, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • jmuhr

      These people? Which ones do you mean? The innocent man that was killed?

      September 20, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  9. David Daniels

    Do you just get a feeling that PEACE has become a dirty word these days. In fact it seems that the world is slipping away from desired peace a picture of daily expectations toward violent choas. To see or hear of a peacemaker not being targeted or executed would now be unusual. Sad, what ever happened to "Blessed are the peacemakers". I guess one sides saint is another sides sinner and each side just wishes to continually purge the "undesirable element". Now, as any good conspiracy theorist might propose, either all the things in the world are being triggered by Covert actions from the west of may it be that the Middle East countries are oppositely trying to destabilize the world but either way you assess things humanity is in trouble!! What the world needs now is concerted prayer, but to what God will you be praying to you might ask??? Still it can't hurt, at the least it may prepare your own soul for the chaotic and destructive days that are ahead.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thayer

      Anyone with half a brain knows most of the destruction and violence we see is caused by Islam. No surprise really. Given the dude that started it all liked to murder people as well as molest young children.

      September 20, 2011 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Sal

    They should all blow themselves up and do the world a favor.......

    September 20, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • jmuhr

      Who do you mean by "they"? All Afghanis? All Muslims? The Taliban?

      September 20, 2011 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • MoBombsYou

      @jmuhr: Muslim extreemists!

      September 20, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Joop

    Deceit is the Taliban's trademark. Deceit when killing opponents, deceit when claiming to be pious and actually being the biggest heroin growers in the world, Deceit when denying women their chance at fullfilment, the list goes on.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • truefax

      they are also a cadre of boy lovers.

      September 20, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • JomoDaMusicMan

      There's a good possibility that KARZI actually had him killed after all HE WAS KARZI CHIEF RIVAL FOR LEADERSHIP OF AFGHANISTAN

      September 20, 2011 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Caitlin

    How sad and disgusting. These people are so brainwashed. Peace be with Burhanuddin Rabbani and his good efforts. Perhaps his martyrdom status will lead to more following in his footsteps. Can't we just give the Taliban their own island to run, then they can bomb one another and live a happy, happy life while the rest of us enjoy sanity.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Joepub

    Is that a bomb in your turban or are you just glad to be here?

    September 20, 2011 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  14. jeff

    beware any one wearing a turban. From now on, in my presence, they will be asked to remove their turban. Failing that, I will kick them in the balls.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • truefax

      Well then you'd better go to the mosque down the street and start some trouble, trouble is you wouldn't fine trubins. In my my presence you will suck my n_ts, when was the last time you saw someone wearing a turbin in america that wasn't a seik (not musilm)?

      They may be ragheads over there but in the states they wear yamika's like the jews.

      September 20, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Sal

    Listen, I don't trust the Muslims period, especially the younger ones because their allegiance is to that damn religion and not to this country!

    September 20, 2011 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
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