Civilian casualties from attacks mount

KABUL (Pajhwok): More than 2,000 civilians were killed or wounded in targeted attacks last year despite the launch of peace negotiations between the government and the Taliban, says a rights watchdog. The Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) said mainly civilian government servants, journalists, members of civil society, religious scholars, prominent figures lawmakers and rights defenders were targeted, AIHRC said.

In its annual report, the panel said as many as 2,250 people were killed or injured in targeted attacks. At least 1,078 individuals were killed and 1,172 injured in 2020. The commission added: “Unfortunately, civilian casualties and targeted killings in 2020 have almost tripled to 169 percent compared to 2019.” A total of 834 civilians had been killed and injured in such assaults in in 2019.

The fatalities included 65 women and 74 children were among the victims of this tactic. Ninety-five 95 women and 290 children were among the injured. Suicide attacks, however, declined by 23 percent in 2020. But the number of civilian casualties from such attacks remained high. Last year, civilian casualties from Taliban suicide attacks fell by 44 percent. In 2019, 1,195 civilians had been killed or injured in Taliban suicide attacks — 301 dead and 894 wounded.