Afghanistan: Civilian casualties hit a record 11,000 in 2015

    Afghanistan: Civilian casualties hit a record 11,000 in 2015

    Feb 14, Kabul:  The number of Afghan civilians killed and wounded surpassed 11,000 in 2015 - the highest number recorded since the US-led invasion more than 14 years ago, media reports said.

    In an annual reported released by the United Nations said that there were 3,545 civilian fatalities and 7,457 people wounded with children paying a particularly heavy toll, as Afghan security forces faced a surge in attacks by the Taliban and other armed groups.

    According to the report, the total of 11,002 civilian casualties marked a four percent rise over 2014, the previous record high.

    UN's special representative for Afghanistan Nicholas Haysom said that one-in-four casualties was a child, while one-in-10 was female.

    The report said "anti-government elements" were responsible for the most harm, causing 62 percent of all civilian casaulties. Those killed and wounded by "pro-government forces" represented 17 percent of the record figure, Al Jazeera reported.

    According to the report, residents in northern and southern Afghanistan were particularly vulnerable as the Taliban and other armed groups intensified assaults on government installations and foreign forces.

    Violence has increased since the drawdown of US and NATO forces over the past few years, as the Afghan army and police struggle against a surge in attacks by anti-government fighters.

    An estimated 59,000 civilian casualities have been recorded since the United Nations began tracking the total in 2009.

    The Oslo Times


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