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. Mary

    Anybody remember Jiffy Pop? What is wrong with these people?

    September 20, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Sal

    Religion corrupts the minds of many people! "god willing I will kill all the people I don't like" god willing of course! 

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

    @Bob – yes Sikhs do carry Kirpans or "daggers" as you call them. Have a problem then you should do something about it.
    @SCOTO – try to find out what is really going on in the world and who lives where instead of what a text book or your gov't tells you.

    September 20, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Bill Duke

    This cannot be right. They tell us every day that Islam is a religion of "peace".

    September 20, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • AUH

      It sure is. What they are doing has nothing to do with Islam. Dont listen to media, I think you should take Quran's words about what Islam is over media and Quran says that killing single innocent person means killing the whole humanity. Killing someone innocent is highest sin in Islam alongside dis-believing on God.

      September 20, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Johan

      ok, show me the most recent instance by any mainstream website or even a politician

      September 20, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • It's All Relevant

      The KKK also claimed to be acting on religion. Does this condemn all of Christianity?

      September 20, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Camran

      If 50 million people believe a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing [Anatole France]
      have you seen peace and Islam together in real world? NOPE. It never gonna happen, cause its not a peace religion.
      but if you ask any Muslim they will say Islam is a religion of peace and talk about Quran, its just a BIG LIE

      September 20, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Intellegent Man

    They are all cowards. Every last one of them. They are doing these suicide bombings b/c that's all they have left. The US can try to enforce peace or whatever it is we're still doing but, the simple fact of the matter is that once we do infact leave, they'll be back to normal again. We need to try and fix our own country! That's why our country is broke now, trying to fix something that can't be fixed. The money we are using to accomidate this war, we are struggling over here O'Sama. Funny we got a Pres. named O'Bama and we are at war with O'Sama...wow...way to go! Wanna make history O'Bama?? Bring back our troops and fix this country. That's prolly why he's being voted out!! Worry about your own country. We got O'Sama, keep it moving!

    Oh, and a bomb in his Turban??? They got the idea from the cartoon...duh!! We give them ideas to go on. And if this Rabbani guy was so protected with 4 others, why not pat the guy down before entering the house?? Ever heard of secuirty??

    September 20, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Arjun

      couldn't agree any more with all you said. Good points

      September 20, 2011 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  6. total non sense

    Religion, war, corruption, terrorism, brain whasing, violence, abuse... Did i miss something?

    September 20, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • sunny lovetts

      Christ isn't a religion, but a truth.

      September 20, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  7. BushChaineyToHell

    One more US stooge is out of the way. Karzai is next!

    September 20, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  8. BushChaineyToHell

    He was nothing but a pupper of Zionists. He desrved what he got. One less stupid stooge.

    September 20, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • fbysea

      Can you see Russia from your trailer?

      September 20, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Lili

    I believe this is what Jyllands-Posten was trying to depict when they printed a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed with a bomb in his turban. That poor cartoonist was threatened and still lives under police protection b/c of 'the insult' to Islam. But what insult, they insult their own religion by behaving in this appaling manner.

    September 20, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Blutto

    A bomb in the turban? Not even original man. Too bad for the old man that he got killed by a sub human beast.

    September 20, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
  11. David Daniels

    Taliban and Al-Qeada feed off the fact that people don't have much to lose, besides their family. No job, no bank accounts, no careers, no worldly objectives to move them into a better situation in this life. Thus if they confront them with what they've already accepted as fact, that they are no bodies in this life, and tell them falsely that God will grant them favor to be somebodies in the next life, while they will somehow take care of what remaining ties they have to this world like family with some little monies....They are being lied to and think they are doing the right thing for themselves and their family by strapping a bombs to themselves... When somehow this world, between east and west, gets equaized in terms of life and opportunity, and everyone has a great deal in this flesh and blood life to lose or give up then maybe the world will change.... That's that hope of the Arab Spring.. I can't see change happening quick enough to make a difference though. The truth is that Imperialism has destroyed those countries and all our futures. It has left the middle east high and dry to just fend for a living from what meager resources they've got left, and now the world is suffering from the sins of the Fathers... That's the truth, and we all live with this truth daily and or, as we see here, often die by it.

    September 20, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
  12. earth2loons

    Sub-human muslims.

    September 20, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
  13. MoBombsYou

    So the Danish cartoonist was not way off when he drew Mr. Mo with a bomb in his Turban!!! Religion of PEACE!

    September 20, 2011 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  14. ATLdoogie

    If I was this fellow and knew my life was constantly in danger, I'd require all meetings be held in bathing suits. Problem solved, damn I'm good.

    September 20, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Barry G.


    I appreciate your note and the things you said.

    I agree with you that we should not call any person an animal.

    We, who are Christians and Jews are taught that all humans are made in the image and likeness of God, and that we are all related (brothers and sisters).

    The sad fact is that far too often we fail to live up to our responsibility, as those made in the image and likeness of God.

    God bless you, my brother.


    September 20, 2011 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
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