Gunmen shoot Afghan negotiator, women’s rights campaigner: Officials

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A prominent women’s rights campaigner and member of the Afghan negotiating team that will hold talks with the Taliban, Fawzia Koofi, has been wounded in a gun attack near Kabul, officials said Saturday.

Gunmen opened fire on Koofi and her sister on Friday when they were returning from a meeting to offer condolences in the province of Parwan, interior ministry spokesman Tariq Arian told AFP.

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The attack took place when the two women had got out of their car to purchase something, Arian said.

Koofi, a member of parliament and strong critic of the Taliban, was shot in her right hand, he said, adding that she was in a stable condition.

No group has claimed the attack so far.

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The chief negotiator of Afghan negotiating team, Mohammad Masoom Stanekzai, confirmed the attack on Koofi.

He said security agencies were investigating the incident.

The politician survived a previous assassination attempt in 2010, when gunmen fired at her as she was returning to Kabul after a function for International Women’s Day.

Koofi, a former deputy speaker of parliament, is one of the four women negotiators in the Afghan negotiating team.

The group will soon start talks with the Taliban aimed at ending the conflict that has ravaged Afghanistan for 19 years.

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