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Taliban Bomber Waited to Give Afghan Peace Envoy Lethal Hug

A Taliban suicide bomber waited for days in Kabul to meet and kill Burhanuddin Rabbani, Afghanistan’s top official pursuing talks with the guerrilla movement, a member of the government’s peace body said.

The bomber stayed at the guest house of the High Peace Council, which Rabbani chaired, and persuaded council members that he had an important Taliban message to give to Rabbani personally, said Mohammed Ismail Qasemyar. The man then killed Rabbani by detonating a bomb hidden in his turban as he hugged him in greeting, Qasemyar said in a phone interview yesterday.