Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Clone of Pakistan Protests: Democracy put the test (Part Two)

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan Protests: Democracy put the test (Part One)

Read more

ENCORE!

The French Maestro of Soul

Read more

FOCUS

US tobacco giants want lion's share of e-cigarette business

Read more

ENCORE!

Bold and bonkers: Kate Bush is back on stage

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Simon Serfaty, US foreign policy specialist

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'It's a War, Stupid!'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

French PM calls on ECB to go further to help economy

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'I love the Socialists'

Read more

  • UN backs inquiry of IS group’s alleged crimes in Iraq

    Read more

  • French education ministry picture sparks racist abuse

    Read more

  • US urges Israel to reverse West Bank land seizure

    Read more

  • Lesotho PM calls for regional peacekeeping force after ‘coup’

    Read more

  • Ukrainian forces retreat from Luhansk airport after clashes

    Read more

  • Teddy Riner, France’s unstoppable judo champion

    Read more

  • Death toll rises in Paris apartment building blast

    Read more

  • Iraqi forces free Amerli in biggest victory over IS militants since June

    Read more

  • French police arrest hungry hedgehog hunters

    Read more

  • Tripoli under control of militias, says government

    Read more

  • Monaco’s Falcao set for Man Utd loan on transfer deadline day

    Read more

  • Spain orders custody for parents of ill British boy

    Read more

  • Anti-government protesters storm Pakistan's state TV

    Read more

  • Putin calls for talks on 'statehood' for east Ukraine

    Read more

  • Poland marks 75 years since German invasion of WWII

    Read more

  • Web doc on French self-immolation protests takes top prize

    Read more

Asia-pacific

Car bomb targets Kandahar police headquarters

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-02-05

A car bomb exploded outside police headquarters in the southern city of Kandahar on Sunday, killing seven police officers and two civilians, officials say. At least 19 people were wounded in the attack.

AFP - Nine people were killed Sunday in a suicide car bomb attack on police headquarters in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar, a bastion of Taliban militancy, government officials said.

Seven policemen were among those killed in the blast, which also wounded 19 people, according to a statement from the Afghan president's office.

Kandahar is the largest city in southern Afghanistan and the birthplace of the Taliban, who have been waging a bloody insurgency since being ousted from power by the US-led invasion in late 2001 that followed the 9/11 attacks.

"At around noon today (0730 GMT), a suicide car bomber detonated his explosive-packed car in district one of Kandahar", a statement from the interior ministry said.

Blood-splattered items from nearby market stalls lay scattered on the ground after the attack, which destroyed four police cars and damaged nearby buildings, according to an AFP correspondent.

"Targeting areas where there are civilians clearly shows the hostility (of the perpetrators) towards innocent people", President Hamid Karzai said.

Militants frequently target Afghan police and military, who are due to assume responsibility for the country's security from NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops by the end of 2014.

NATO defence ministers on Thursday voiced hope that Afghan forces would take the lead by the end of next year, with foreign troops moving to a backup role until their combat mission ends.

Seven Afghan civilians were killed on January 19 when a suicide attacker targeting ISAF vehicles blew up his car at Kandahar airport -- an attack claimed by the Taliban.

A UN report on Saturday said civilian deaths in Afghanistan reached a record high in 2011 -- the fifth straight year the death toll has gone up.

A total of 3,021 civilians died -- mostly at the hands of insurgents -- up eight percent from 2,790 in 2010, the UN mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) said.

The record loss of life was blamed mainly on changes in the insurgents' tactics, which saw an increased use of homemade bombs and deadlier suicide attacks.

On Sunday the Taliban rejected the report.

"In this report UNAMA has tried to be more political than to focus on human rights," the militants said on their website.

"In the past 10 years the United Nations have continually tried to hide the inhuman crimes of the main perpetrators (foreign forces) of the current war and make their crimes look lawful."

The militants also accused the UN of following US policies in Afghanistan and lacking independence.

"About Afghanistan, most of the time your stance does not differ from that of the White House," they said.

"In some cases UN repeats what the White House says, which makes people think that UN confirms US policies and is not an independent body."

Taliban negotiators have begun holding preliminary talks with US officials in Qatar on plans for peace negotiations aimed at ending the decade-long Afghan war.

Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani is to discuss Afghan peace efforts with the Qatari leadership when he travels to the Gulf state for a visit on Monday.
 

Date created : 2012-02-05

  • AFGHANISTAN

    Afghan civilian deaths reached record high in 2011

    Read more

  • AFGHANISTAN

    US downplays comments on early Afghan withdrawal

    Read more

  • PAKISTAN

    ‘Pakistan helping Taliban’, reports UK media

    Read more

COMMENT(S)