Half-Brother of Afghan President Karzai Assassinated

Posted July 12th, 2011 at 6:05 am (UTC-5)
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The half brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai has been shot dead at his home in southern Kandahar province.

President Karzai told reporters in Kabul the assassination of his younger brother, Ahmad Wali Karzai, represents the suffering of all Afghan people.

Afghan officials say Wali Karzai was killed on Tuesday, likely by one of his bodyguards. No motive is immediately known.

Wali Karzai served as the head of the provincial council and was one of the most powerful leaders in southern Afghanistan.

The provincial council chief was often the target of corruption allegations. In November, a U.S. diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks suggested that Wali Karzai was “widely understood to be corrupt and a narcotics trafficker.” The president's half-brother repeatedly denied the charges.

Wali Karzai survived at least two previous attempts on his life in recent years. In May 2009 insurgents attacked his motorcade, killing one of his bodyguards. Wali Karzai also escaped an earlier attack on his provincial council facilities in Kandahar.