IEA rejects UN report on rights violations against former officials, forces

KABUL (Agencies): The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) on Tuesday rejected a recent UNAMA report claiming 800 instances of extrajudicial killing, arbitrary arrest and detention, torture and ill-treatment and enforced disappearance carried out against individuals affiliated with the former government and its security forces. UNAMA said this is despite the announcement by the IEA of a “general amnesty” for former government officials and forces. Zabihullah Mujahid, the spokesman of the Islamic Emirate, said that the cases of revenge, which are only a few, have been seriously investigated by the relevant bodies of the Islamic Emirate. “Unfortunately, some agencies of the United Nations, instead of understanding the concrete realities in Afghanistan and seeing positive developments, are always looking for negative points and spreading propaganda, which first of all harms their own credibility,” Mujahid said on X (formerly known as Twitter). “UNAMA’s report presents a sobering picture of the treatment of individuals affiliated with the former government and security forces of Afghanistan since the Taliban (IEA) takeover of the country. Even more so, given they were assured that they would be not targeted, it is a betrayal of the people’s trust,” said the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Turk. “I urge the de facto authorities to carefully consider the findings of this report and to uphold their obligations under international human rights law by preventing further violations and holding perpetrators to account.” UNAMA said that in interviews, individuals described instances of torture and ill-treatment carried out by IEA security force members, including beatings with pipes, cables, verbal threats and abuse. To date, efforts by the IEA to investigate and hold perpetrators accountable for the incidents described in the UNAMA report have been extremely limited. Even in the few, isolated cases where an investigation was announced by the de facto authorities, progress lacks transparency and accountability; impunity prevails, UNAMA said. “While the announcement of a general Amnesty by the Taliban in August 2021 was a welcome step, it continues to not be fully upheld, with impunity for human rights violations prevailing,” said Roza Otunbayeva, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan and Head of UNAMA. “The de facto authorities must demonstrate a genuine commitment to the general amnesty. This is a crucial step in ensuring real prospects for justice, reconciliation and lasting peace in Afghanistan.”