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Afghan parliament candidate killed in explosion

KABUL (Web Desk) A former envoy for Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, and a nominee in the upcoming parliamentary polls, was killed in an explosion in his campaign office on Wednesday, becoming the 10th candidate to lose his life in a series of attacks targeting the election process on Saturday.A spokesman for the Taliban said that Abdul Jabar Qahraman, a “prominent communist general” was killed in “a tactical blast” in Lashkar Gah, the provincial capital of the southern Helmand province, where he had gone for campaigning.

Speaking with reporters, Omar Zwak, a spokesman for Helmand’s governor, said that Qahraman had succumbed to his injuries after being killed by explosives that were placed underneath his coach.During the occupation of Afghanistan by the former Soviet Union, Qahraman had served as an army general and, in recent years, became an envoy for Ghani leading the battle against the Taliban insurgents in Helmand, one of the militants’ bastions.

Considered as the face of Helmand, Qahraman was an outspoken critic of the US-led policies in Afghanistan and was part of a group of former communists trying to revive the once leftist party that had disintegrated during the civil war.Condemning the attack, Ghani said that it will not weaken the will of the Afghani people in casting their votes on Saturday.Last week, another candidate along with more than a dozen other people lost his life in a suicide attack in.

Helmand; one of several to take place in recent weeks which also saw the deaths of eight other nominees in election-related killings.The Taliban have threatened to launch attacks on the day of the vote, urging people to avoid the process.The Afghan government, on its part, has given several days of leave to state schools which are to be used as venues for the voting process.

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