At least 20 people killed and 50 wounded in a suicide attack outside Kandahar airport; French President Hollande: French troops pullout from Afghanistan to begin from next month and to be completed at the end of 2012
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  • (JUNE 4-10)

    According to reports, in one of the bloodiest attacks in recent weeks in Afghanistan, a pair of suicide bombers struck outside the airport in Afghanistan’s southern city of Kandahar on June 5, 2012, killing 20 civilians and wounding 50. General Abdul Hameed, Afghan army commander for the southern region told that four provincial governors from the south were at a meeting at the sprawling NATO base at the airport when the attack took place. A bomber on a motorcycle blew himself up in a parking lot near the base packed with truck drivers and other civilians waiting to get into the facility. A few minutes later, as people gathered at the site of the blast, another bomber on foot walked into the crowd and detonated his explosives. 1

    In another development, according to reports, French President Francois Hollande said on June 10, 2012 that France will begin its Afghanistan pullout next month and complete it by year-end, after four French troops were killed in a Taliban attack. Hollande announced that the withdrawal of French troops from Afghanistan, one of his presidential campaign pledges, “will begin in the month of July, will be carried out and be completed at the end of 2012.” He also said that France would pay a “national homage” to the men killed in a suicide bombing and that five wounded soldiers would be repatriated rapidly. Meanwhile, French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian is due to reach Afghanistan on June 10, 2012 after he was told by the French president to head there, hours after the attack. 2