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Early on the morning of November 17, 2009 American soldiers raided a family compound in Ghazni, killed two of the inhabitants, and seized Habib-ur-Rahman, based on a tip that he was an al Qaeda member.[1][2][3][3] According to Anand Gopal, writing in the Asia Times Habib-ur-Rahman shared the compound with several cousins and their families. He and his cousin Majibullah Qarar were employees of the Government of Afghanistan. The two cousins who were shot down when bearded and tattooed American troops stormed the compound were Hamidullah, who operated a grocery stall, and Azim, a baker. An interpreter with the American soldiers said they were acting on a tip that Habib-ur-Rahman, who had studied Computer Science in Kuwait was a member of al Qaeda.

According to the Asia Times Habib-ur-Rahman and another cousin were taken away by the Americans, who, in the course of the raid, also destroyed the families' furniture.[1] The cousin was released a few days later. But Habib-ur-Rahman's whereabout have not been officially confirmed.

Habib-ur-Rahman was a computer support technician, who worked for the Afghan government translating technical documents from English to the Pashtun language.[1] His cousin Majibullah Qarar is the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture's spokesman in Ghazni. They wrote:

Government officials who independently investigated the scene in the aftermath of the raid and corroborated the claims of the family also pressed for an answer as to why two of Qarar's family members were killed. American forces issued a statement saying that the dead were "enemy militants [that] demonstrated hostile intent".

Asia Times reported that the Minister of Agriculture himself had requested the Americans state what had happened to Habib-ur-Rahman, without success.[1]

Impact of the capture

Anand Gopal's coverage of Habib-ur-Rahman's capture, and similar captures, was picked up by other commentators as demonstrating that rather than closing the United States archipelago of secret interrogation sites, President Barack Obama was expanding the archipelago.[3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Anand Gopal (2010-01-30). "Terror comes at night in Afghanistan". Asia Times. Archived from the original on 2010-01-29. http://www.webcitation.org/query?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.atimes.com%2Fatimes%2FSouth_Asia%2FLA30Df01.html&date=2010-01-29. Retrieved 2010-01-29. 
  2. Mohammed A. Salih (2010-01-29). "AFGHANISTAN: US Night Raids and Secret Prisons Anger Civilians". Inter Press Service. Archived from the original on 2010-02-02. http://www.webcitation.org/query?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ipsnews.net%2Fnews.asp%3Fidnews%3D50159&date=2010-02-02. "In one case, in November 2009, a team of U.S. soldiers attacked the house of Majidullah Qarar, the spokesman for the Afghan minister of agriculture, in search of his cousin, Habib-ur-Rahman, a computer programmer and government employee. In the process, they killed two of Qarar's other cousins, who were unarmed. One was shot when he ran towards the door, the other as he tried to help his bleeding cousin. The soldiers finally found Rahman in the house." 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Johann Hari (2010-02-12). "Obama's Secret Prisons in Afghanistan Endanger Us All: He was elected in part to drag us out of this trap. Instead, he's dragging us further in". The Independent. http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/johann-hari/johann-hari-obamas-secret-prisons-in-afghanistan-endanger-us-all-1896996.html. Retrieved 2011-12-11. "A platoon of US soldiers blasted their way into a house in search of Habib ur-Rahman, a young computer programmer and government employee who they had been told by someone, somewhere was a secret Talibanist."  mirror