Suicide bomber strikes Afghan border police residence in Kandahar

By Mirwais Khan, AP
Sunday, May 16, 2010

Suicide bomber strikes Afghan border police

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — A suicide bomber detonated his cache of explosives late Sunday near the gate of an Afghan Border Police residence in Kandahar where insurgents are waging a campaign of targeted killings.

Kandahar Police Chief Sher Mohammed Zazai said at least three people were wounded in the attack in the northeast part of Kandahar city.

“There was a suicide attacker on a motorbike who blew himself up when he got near the gate,” Zazai said.

Zelmai Ayubi, spokesman for the provincial governor of Kandahar, said at least four border policemen were wounded in the attack. He said two other suicide attackers entered the police compound, but were shot dead by police during a gunbattle before they could detonate their vests of explosives.

NATO is pouring troops into southern Afghanistan as part of a stepped-up security operation in Kandahar.

Earlier on Sunday, two militants on a motorbike opened fire on a car belonging to a National Security Directorate official who was on his way to work, Zazai said. The intelligence official’s driver was killed.

Separately, a U.S. service member was killed Sunday following an insurgent attack in southern Afghanistan, NATO said. Alliance spokesman Col. Wayne Shanks confirmed an American died Sunday but declined to provide details, pending notification of the service member’s family.

Twenty-four NATO troops, including 16 U.S. service members, have been killed in Afghanistan so far this month.

Southern Afghanistan is the birthplace of the Taliban and has been the hub of some of the fiercest fighting in recent weeks between militants and coalition forces and troops of President Hamid Karzai’s government.

The Interior Ministry said Sunday that police officers came under attack from insurgents a day earlier while working to defuse a roadside bomb in eastern Paktia province. The ministry said one militant was killed and two others arrested after a gunbattle.

Also Sunday, the appellate court of the Afghan Criminal Justice Task Force reported that drug-traffickers from the provinces of Nangarhar, Herat, Kapisa, Helmand, Panjshir, Kunar, Kandahar and Wardak had been fined and sentenced to prison last week.

When they were arrested, authorities confiscated heroin, opium and more than 68 gallons (257 liters) of liquid chemicals used in making narcotics. Each was sentenced to up to 18 years in prison and fined up to $60,000.

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