Senior aide to Karzai assassinated

Ref: A group of armed men have killed a senior adviser to Afghan President Hamid Karzai, and a member of the parliament in a daring attack in the capital, Kabul.

Initial reports about the fate of Jan Mohammad Khan, the Karzai aide, and Mohammad Hashim Watanwal, the parliamentarian, were conflicting, but a senior government official confirmed to Al Jazeera that both men have been killed and the attack is ongoing.

Khan, the former governor of southern Uruzgan province, was considered an important adviser to Karzai.
After a troubled stint as governor marred by controversy and corruption, he was sacked in 2006 and moved to Kabul as one in the president`s long list of advisers.

Watanwal, a former member of the communist regime, was elected to the Afghan parliament in 2005. He had reportedly returned to the country after spending the Taliban years abroad in Pakistan and the West.

“This is yet another personal blow to president Karzai as he was from the same tribe as the president” said Al Jazeera`s Bernard Smith, reporting from Kabul.
“He was also the right hand man to Ahmad Wali who was assassinated last week.”

Khan and Wantanwal are the latest in the long list of top Afghan officials assassinated.

Last week, Ahmad Wali Karzai, brother of the president and the influential chief of Kandahar provincial council, was gunned down in his home by his close confidant. The Taliban claimed responsbility for his killing,
saying Sardar Mohamad, the killer, had been in touch with them.

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