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Full nameKandahar
Native nameکندهار
Settlement typeCity
Elevation3280.8 ft (1000 m)
Total Population468200 (2006)
Other information
Time zoneAfghanistan Standard Time (UTC+4:30)

     Home | City | Kandahar

Kandahar (Pashto: کندهار , Persian: قندهار ) is the second largest city in Afghanistan, with a population of about 468,200 as of 2006. It is the capital of Kandahar Province, located in the south of the country at about 1,005 m (3,297 feet) above sea level. The Arghandab River runs along the west of the city.

Kandahar is a major trading center for sheep, wool, cotton, silk, felt, food grains, fresh and dried fruit, and tobacco. The region produces fine fruits, especially pomegranates and grapes, and the city has plants for canning, drying, and packing fruit. Kandahar has an international airport and extensive road links with Farah and Herat to the west, Ghazni and Kabul to the northeast, Tareen Kot to the north, and Quetta in Pakistan to the south.

The region around Kandahar is one of the oldest human settlements known so far. Alexander the Great founded Kandahar in the 4th century BC and named it with the Ancient Greek name Αλεξάνδρεια Aραχωσίας ( ). Many empires have long fought over the city, due to its strategic location along the trade routes of Southern and Central Asia. In 1709, Mirwais Hotak made the region an independent kingdom and turned Kandahar into the first capital of the Hotaki dynasty. In 1747, Ahmad Shah Durrani, founder of the Afghan Empire, made it the capital of modern Afghanistan.

From 1996 to 2001, it served as the capital of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. Since 2002, the city is slowly being rebuilt while dealing with Taliban insurgency.

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