4 Threat Matrix: Pakistan's ISI, Quetta Shura behind Rabbani's assassination, Afghan officials say

Written by Bill Roggio on October 2, 2011 9:46 AM to 4 Threat Matrix

Available online at: http://www.longwarjournal.org/threat-matrix/archives/2011/10/pakistans_isi_quetta_shura_beh.php

Afghanistan's Interior Minister and the chief of the National Directorate of Security have directly pointed the finger at the government of Pakistan, Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate, and Mullah Omar's Quetta Shura for directing the assassination of former president and head of the High Peace Council Burhanuddin Rabbani. From TOLONEWS:

The Pakistani government, the Inter-Services Intelligence agency and the Taliban's Quetta Shura were directly involved in the assassination of former Afghan president Burhanuddin Rabbani, Afghanistan's interior minister said on Saturday.

Addressing the Afghan House of Representatives, Interior Minister General Bismellah Mohammadi said that the plot to kill Mr Rabbani, the head of the High Peace Council, was hatched outside Afghanistan five to six months ago.

There is "no doubt the ISI is involved," Gen Mohammadi said.

On Saturday top Afghan security officials, including interior and defence ministers and the acting spy chief, were summoned to the parliament to brief lawmakers about the findings of an investigation into the death of Mr Rabbani.

Mr Rabbani, who was tasked with brokering peace between the Taliban and the Afghan government, was killed at his home in Kabul by a suicide bomber pretending to be a peace envoy from the Taliban leadership.

After the death of Mr Rabbani, President Karzai formed a panel comprised of senior security officials under the lead of Defence Minister General Abdul Rahim Wardak to investigate the assassination of the slain leader.

At a separate press conference on Saturday, the National Directorate of Security (NDS) said that the assassination of Mr Rabbani was organised in an area of Quetta in Pakistan.

NDS Spokesman Lotfullah Mashal said that it was beyond reason to believe that the Pakistani military could not become aware of such a plan given the close tabs it keeps on that area.

And today, Afghanistan's presidential palace released a statement claiming that the suicide bomber was a Pakistani from the Chaman, a known Taliban haven in Baluchistan province. From AFP:

Evidence shows that Rabbani's death last month "was plotted in Quetta and the person who carried out the suicide attack against Rabbani was a citizen of Pakistan," the statement said.

It added that the killer had been living in Chaman, a Pakistani border town near Quetta.

Meanwhile, Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani dismissed such claims and said "our intentions are beyond doubt in pursuing peace in the region." Gilani's statements are straight from the controversial advertising blitz that included full-page print ads in US papers and a video released on YouTube.