Wali Karzai's murder widely condemned
KABUL (PAN): World leaders, senior Afghan government officials and residents of Kandahar province on Tuesday condemned the assassination of Ahmad Wali Karzai, half brother of President Hamid Karzai, and the Kandahar council chief.
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh condoled with President Karzai over the death of his younger brother, the Presidential Palace said in a statement.
In a letter to Karzai, Manmohan Singh expressed "deep sorrow and shock" at the assassination.
The United States Embassy and General David Petraeus, commander of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), also issued statements expressing their condolences for President Karzai and condemning the killing.
Wali Karzai was killed by one of his bodyguards at his home in Kandahar at around 11:30 am. The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the assassination.
Prime Minister Gilani called the killing “an act of cowardice,” according to a statement, and expressed his “heartfelt condolences” and prayed for peace for Wali Karzai and strength to his family.
Petraeus said, according to an ISAF statement, “My personal sympathy and condolences go out to President Karzai and his family during this extremely difficult time.” Strongly condemning the killing, he said that ISAF would support the Afghan government to bring the perpetrators to justice.
The US Embassy also condemned the attack. A statement from the embassy said: “We extend our condolences to the people of Kandahar and to the family of Mr. Karzai.”
Meanwhile, governors of several provinces in their condolence messages denounced the murder, saying Wali Karzai played an untiring role in bringing about peace and stability to Kandahar region. They said Wali Karzai's murder was the handiwork of elements who wanted to destabilise Afghanistan.
Maidan Wardak governor Mohammad Halim Fidae said that the enemies of Afghanistan were out to kill influential figures who had role in the country's stability.
Zabul governor Ashraf Nasiri said that target killings of tribal elders and government officials had recently increased. He said the murder of Wali Karzai was the latest in a series of target killings.
Helmand governor Mohammad Gulab Mangal in his message said that Wali Karzai was an influential, hard working and patriotic citizen of Afghanistan. Wali Karzai had a key role in the development and reconstruction of Kandahar, he said, calling Wali Karzai as his closest friend' whose proposals led to improved security situation in Zabul as well.
Residents of Kandahar city said they were concerned over Wali Karzai's death. The death would have a negative impact on the security situation in Kandahar city, they said.
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