Top 3 Kandahar officials killed by own guards, United States general survives

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The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack on Qahraman, who was running for the southern province of Helmand, a stronghold for the militant group, reported AFP. Local media said the participants were making their way to a helipad after the meeting when the shooting occurred.

Inside the provincial governor's compound in Kandahar City, at least one attacker fatally shot the region's powerful police chief, Gen. Abdul Raziq and the provincial intelligence chief. Earlier reports said the governor was killed. And despite charges of people being tortured or killed while in police custody, he remained a powerful USA ally.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, and a spokesman for the group told The Associated Press that Gen. Miller was the target. Three Americans were hurt.

Initial accounts said the three senior Afghan officials were wounded in the shooting in Kandahar.

He continued: "The incident will also make the military balance in southern Afghanistan considerably more fragile, as General Raziq was often at the forefront of government efforts to slow the Taliban's advances".

"Afghanistan lost a patriot", he said on social network Twitter.

"I promise the Afghan people that soon the situation will get normal in Kandahar", Ghani said.

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It relies on Saudi support for its Middle East effort to counter Iranian influence and fight extremism. The Trump administration, from the president on down, is heavily invested in the Saudi relationship.

Dr Faisal said Pakistan was ready to extend technical and material support to Afghanistan in this regard.

KABUL-When Afghans cast ballots Saturday in parliamentary elections viewed as a crucial test run for the presidential vote, it will be a shrinking number of voters that braves the tide of Taliban and Islamic State violence.

And later an improvised explosive device blew up near the campaign rally of another candidate in the Logar provincial capital Pule Alam, Laraway said.

Raziq took over as Kandahar's police chief after his predecessor, Khan Mahammad Mojayed, was killed in a suicide attack in 2011. A New York Times story in 2014 called him the man who put "Fear in Taliban and Their Enemies".

This is one of the most important security incidents of the past 17 years - in which almost the entire leadership of a province has been eliminated. In 2017, the UN Committee Against Torture recommended that Raziq be prosecuted over allegations of torture and enforced disappearance.

Razeq was criticised by human rights groups but highly respected by U.S. officers who saw him as one of Afghanistan's most effective leaders, largely responsible for keeping Kandahar province under control. His death, analysts say, could change the political landscape. "He was able to maintain the security presence of the Afghan government on the outskirts of the city and even in faraway areas".

The Spokesman said that they hope that Afghan parliamentary elections will be held peacefully as democracy is inevitable for stability and durable peace in Afghanistan.