The Kabul Times.

Concerns over increasing civilian casualties in Afghanistan

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By: Suraya Raiszada

As intra-Afghan talks have already started between Afghanistan government and Taliban in Qatar, unfortunately continued war and violence have resulted in increasing civilian casualties in the country.
The country’s defense and security organs by blaming Taliban for increasing civilian casualties in the country say Taliban by using new tactic are planting improvised explosives devices (IEDs) on public roads resulting in civilian casualties.

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“Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) foil nearly 500 improvised explosives devices (IEDs) in each 24 hours along highways and public roads in the country,” said Fawad Aman, deputy spokesperson to ministry of defense.
He added that Taliban fighters have doubled using of IEDs comparing to previous years, saying that the country’s defense and security forces were working hard to foil IEDs to prevent from civilian casualties.
Most of civilian casualties have been recently caused by IEDs and Taliban attacks, but a part of the casualties has been also caused by military operations conducted by the country’s defense and security forces.
Meanwhile, Afghanistan Ministry of Interior (MoI) has informed that 210 innocent civilians have been killed and wounded as a result of terrorist activities of the Taliban group in the country.
A spokesperson to the interior ministry has blamed Taliban fighters for all civilian casualties in the country.
Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) has asked all sides to the conflict to maintain ceasefire to prevent from increasing civilian casualties in the country.
“Despite the fact that intra-Afghan talks have started between Afghanistan government and Taliban negotiating teams in Qatar, continued war and violence are causing civilian casualties on daily basis,” said Zabihullah Farhang, a spokesperson to Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission.
He said that from 12 – 19 September, 64 innocent civilians including women and children were killed and wounded as a result of 10 various security incidents in various parts of the country.
Meanwhile, in a separate statement issued by the commission the other day said that about 945 people suffered casualties in targeted attacks during the past six months across the country.
In a statement, AIHRC said targeted killings have increased besides the ongoing conflict throughout the country.
The statement said 945 people suffered casualties within the past six months of current year across the country.
It added 533 people were killed and another 412 wounded in the targeted killing incidents.
A number of Afghan experts have also reacted to recent civilian casualties in the country, saying that civilian casualties caused by continued war and violence are not acceptable.
“Unfortunately the issue of civilian casualties has changed to the most debateable issues in recent years as all sides to the continued conflict are blamed of civilian casualties in the country,” said Amir Mohammad, an Afghan expert.
Afghanistan government, international community and EU have repeatedly asked the Taliban for a comprehensive truce in the country, but Taliban still has not said ‘yes’ to the demand.

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The Kabul Times.