Civilians Bear Brunt of Afghan Attacks

At least 22 people were killed and more than 50 hurt in a deadly day in Afghanistan, and a disputed death toll from a NATO airstrike could bring that number even higher.

Afghan officials say the airstrike killed at least 21 civilians, including women and children, when NATO forces targeted a home where a wedding celebration was taking place.

The International Security and Assistance Force admitted the raid took place, saying it was a joint Afghan-NATO operation in Baraki Barak district of Logar province, but stopped short of confirming any civilian casualties.

Instead, an ISAF press release referred to only "multiple insurgents killed," adding that two female civilians were found with non-life threatening injuries and airlifted to a NATO base for treatment.

Earlier today, three suicide bombers blew themselves up in a crowded area outside the main Kandahar air base, killing at least 22 people, turning a marketplace into a scene of mangled flesh and blood. The attack sent Afghans scurrying for cover.

"An explosion happened in the hotel," says Sayedullah Khan, a shopkeeper who works nearby. "We ran there to help our neighbors who were wounded, and another explosion happened."

The first suicide bomber detonated a motorcycle laden with explosives, according to Kandahar police. As people moved closer to help remove the casualties, the second and third suicide bombers struck, creating even more chaos among the confusion.

The explosions happened outside the main gate to the sprawling Kandahar air base as trucks carrying NATO equipment were lined up waiting to enter.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned the attack, saying it proves "The enemy is getting weaker because they are killing innocent people."

Kandahar, in southern Afghanistan, is considered a Taliban stronghold.

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