Second blast strikes Kandahar

Shops ablaze after rocket attack strikes centre of city, residents say.

    A rocket attack is believed to have caused the explosion in central Kandahar

    The streets were largely empty at the time of the attack, with the city still reeling from Tuesday's deadly assault and many Kandahar residents observing the fasting month of Ramadan.

    Dangerous city

    Michael Griffin, an expert on Afghanistan, told Al Jazeera: "It came five or six days after the maximum alert had passed, so it was easier to go under the radar.

    IN VIDEO

    Security tightened in Kandahar
    More Videos...
    "In my view, it was the Taliban, but of course, the Taliban is not a unified force. There is no such thing as a unified Taliban. It seems to be a strategy of tension during a very long, drawn out election process."

    A Taliban spokesman had earlier denied responsibility for Tuesday's bombing.

    Wednesday's attack comes just hours after the governor of Kandahar handed responsibility for the city's security over to the army.

    The police have promised to arrest the perpetrators of Tuesday's attack in the heart of the city within 72 hours.

    Kandahar is the biggest city in southern Afghanistan, an area where Taliban fighters battling the Western-backed government continue to have strongholds.

    The city was the powerbase of the former Taliban government, which was ousted from power in Afghanistan by US-led troops in 2001 and replaced with Karzai's Western-backed administration.

    The Taliban has struck repeatedly in recent weeks in a bloody countdown to nationwide elections last week, only the second time that war-weary Afghans have voted for a president in their history.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    From Qatar to Alaska, a personal journey exploring what it means to belong when your culture is endangered.