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Influential Afghan Politician Ismail Khan Escapes Suicide Attack

HERAT, Afghanistan -- Afghanistan's former Minister of Water and Energy Mohammad Ismail Khan has escaped an apparent assassination attempt.

Ismail Khan was at the entrance to a mosque in the western city of Herat when a suicide bomber detonated explosives nearby.

The head of the provincial council in Herat, Dawood Qattali, told RFE/RL that Khan, who was attending Friday Prayers, was not injured.

The only casualty was the suicide bomber.

Khan, 67, is a former warlord who came to prominence during the 1979-89 Soviet war in Afghanistan.

He is a nominee for vice president, running on a ticket with Abdurrab Rasul Sayaf, one of 11 candidates in Afghanistan's upcoming presidential election in April.

In 2009, Khan survived a suicide attack in Herat that killed four of his bodyguards.