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Home | Editorial | Targeting civilians, a war crime

Targeting civilians, a war crime

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Targeting civilians, a war crime
 A fundamental rule of international humanitarian law is that civilians must enjoy general protection against danger arising from military operations. The rule of civilian immunity is one of “the oldest fundamental maxims” of international customary law, meaning that it is binding on all parties to a conflict, regardless of whether a conflict is international or non-international in character.Non-state parties to a conflict are also obliged to respect the norms of customary international law. At all times, it is forbidden to direct attacks against civilians; indeed, to attack civilians intentionally while aware of their civilian status is a war crime.
Last day’s attack on celebration ceremony of 23rd anniversary of martyrdom of Shaheed Abdul Ali Mazari, caused martyrdom and injuring of 27 people and the so-called ISIS group has claimed its responsibility.s
Reactions to this attack on a popular gathering in Shaheed Mazari mosque was vast and strong. Calling this attack against all religious humanitarian norms, the presidential office statement said the terrorists have failed in the battlefields to fight face to face with Afghan National Security and Defense Forces (ANSDF) and therefore attacking peaceful civilian gatherings and ordinary people.
The presidential statement adds that targeting people and their gathering is a crime against humanity and frankly against Islamic values and human rights principles and their perpetrators are liable of punishment.
Indeed, this is not the first attack on civilian gatherings and religious, national ceremonies, prior to these similar attacks have taken place and thousands innocent people victimized.A UNAMA report released recently, shows that in 2017 over 10000 ordinary people of Afghanistan including women and children martyred or injured. In an ambulance VBIED attack in Sadarat square, over 100 people were killed as Taliban claimed its responsibility. 
Usually Taliban and ISIS don’t submit reasons of their attacks. But in the wake of every attack they claim that have targeted convoy of foreign troops and their Afghan partners as well as military headquarters.This claim proves that they are aware on consequences of their actions which create strong wrath and indignation of public opinion.Thus, they want to justify their attacks on civilians and respond the question of public opinion with their wrong action.
The terrorists want to tell the public opinion that they attack foreign forces and their Afghan colleagues not on civilians and ordinary people. But every attack inevitably victimizes civilians.
The Saudi Arabia based OIC has recently issued a statement and emphasized on illegality of suicide and asked all Islamic scholars across the world to verdict against it and avoidMuslims to perpetrate such unlawful action.
According to Islamic Shariah, even killing of one innocent person means killing of all people, but Taliban and ISIS have always committed it and victimized ordinary people and civilians. These two factions, enjoy killing of innocent people due to their bloodthirsty nature in one hand and want to create distance between people and government and damage the latter’s’ reputation on the other and retaliate their failures in the battlefield.

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