News / Asia

UN: Civilian Casualties on the Rise in Afghanistan

FILE - An Afghan man carries an injured boy to a hospital after two roadside bombs struck the Achin district of Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Nov. 28, 2013.
FILE - An Afghan man carries an injured boy to a hospital after two roadside bombs struck the Achin district of Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Nov. 28, 2013.
Sharon Behn
A new United Nations report says the number of civilians dying in fighting in Afghanistan continues to rise. 2013 civilian deaths matched the record highs of 2011.

The U.N. said unrelenting armed conflict in Afghanistan killed almost 3,000 civilians and injured more than 5,500 during 2013.

Women and children increasingly bear the brunt of the violence, most of which is blamed on anti-government insurgents.

United Nations Assistance Mission special representative Jan Kubis said the targeted killings were a crime.

"There are groups that are boasting about killing civilians, are making statements about how good it is that civilians are being targeted and killed. These groups should understand this might border on war crimes," said Kubis.

The U.N. report released Saturday said homemade bombs planted by anti-government forces in places like parks, roads, and on bicycles, were the biggest killers of civilians.

A number of anti-government forces, including the Taliban, are operating in Afghanistan.

More civilians also are getting caught in the crossfire between militants and government forces, as Afghan security units try to gain control of the country.

And the U.N. said civilians were still being killed by international forces. But U.N. Human Rights Director Georgette Gagnon said those numbers paled in comparison.

"Of total civilian casualties, that's the total, we found that only three percent were attributed to international forces,  three percent of the total civilian casualties," said Gagnon.

The NATO International Security Assistance Force issued a statement saying it would work with Afghan forces to reduce civilian casualties.  More than 14,000 Afghan civilians have died since 2009. Thousands more have been injured.

Kubis said the number of civilian deaths was still rising so far in 2014.

International combat forces are due to leave Afghanistan by the end of this year.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: jimmy from: china
February 09, 2014 11:03 AM
people suffer a lot in the war. why do they like to chase power? it seems that fighting is the only way for them to achieve their goal. however, civilians get too much pains during this.

by: Haron from: Afghanistan, Kabul
February 09, 2014 7:44 AM
if we should have not mention Taliban as brothers we have not seen such days today. our government is in a wrong way. our president has guided the Afghan people and forces in stress and dangerous path.
all the people counting the seconds, Minutes, Hours, Days, Weeks and Finally month to terminate this corrupted government. after one and half month [54 days] we will end to a president whom wear traditional cloths. using simple words in press conferences like a baby at two years class.
these details have been connected to give more opportunities for Taliban to risen the Afghan civilian deaths.
if we had a president to criticize on savage Taliban. calling on people of Afghanistan as a family and Longfellow on International communities we would never seen such risen toll death and problems. from one side pressure are upgrading on NATO, ISAF, and US troops in Europe and United States to bring back their sons and family guardian [those males and females whom involved in military] to their homes. and from one side we watch such people in Afghanistan like Karzai's stimuli to accept Taliban and Pakistani Militants as brothers due their tribalism opinion really me and others are not willing to feel a better future. please Obama use your final talent to perish these problems or otherwise world could prepare overdose [poison] to eat and finish at once.
all the world accomplish their happiness but we [troops, workers, engineers, doctors, teachers, drivers and other tradespeople working] accomplish our sadness to the grave by death rising everyday.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs