27 Jul 2011

Kandahar mayor killed in suicide attack

10:13 pm on 27 July 2011

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing that killed the mayor of the southern Afghan city of Kandahar.

Ghulam Haidar Hameedi's killing is the latest in a string of assassinations of allies of President Hamid Karzai in the critical southern region.

The suicide bomber detonated the explosive as Mr Hameedi stood discussing a land dispute that began after he ordered the destruction of illegally-built homes.

At least two children were reportedly killed during the demolition.

A spokesperson for the provincial governor says the bomber detonated explosives that were hidden in his turban, the BBC reports.

Mr Hamidi's death comes two weeks after President Hamid Karzai's brother, Ahmad Wali Karzai, was assassinated in Kandahar, and as foreign troops begin to depart the almost 10-year-old conflict.

Ahmad Karzai was one of the most powerful men in the south of the country.