Kandahar bombing kills 3

A suicide bombing near Kandahar Airfield has killed three people and wounded 35.

A suicide bombing near Kandahar Airfield on Tuesday night has killed three people and wounded 35.

Afghan police said a cache of explosives went off in an attack targeting a compound providing logistical support to NATO forces. The site of the blast was about two kilometres from the airfield, said Kandahar police Chief Sher Mohammed Zazai.

The bombing came the same day that the half-brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai urged the international community not to pull out of Kandahar in the face of a wave of violence.

Ahmad Wali Karzai, who is a top official in Kandahar province and a key powerbroker in southern Afghanistan, said the security situation in the city was worse years ago.

Ahmad Wali Karzai, a half-brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai, speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Kandahar on Wednesday. ((Rahmat Gul/Associated Press))
"We are not facing a big threat," said Karzai.

"You get one or two incidents once or twice a week," he said. "That shouldn't be a concern. A suicide attack can happen anywhere."

Karzai's comments were prompted by the United Nations decision a day earlier to pull some of its foreign workers out of Kandahar and move them to Kabul. The UN also told more than 200 Afghan workers to stay home.

The UN move came hours after three bombs went off in the city, killing two people.

Since April 12, at least 20 civilians, including eight children, have died in attacks in Kandahar.

The rise in violence has come as the United States gears up to lead a summer offensive to push the Taliban out of the area and wrest control from the region's warlords who allow insurgents to slip in and out of the city.

Karzai said a pullout from Kandahar plays into the Taliban's hands and will affect humanitarian assistance projects.

With files from The Associated Press