• publish: 21 December 2015
  • time: 9:06 pm
  • category: Excerpted
  • No: 2698

Security related incidents increased throughout Afghanistan

Nicholas Haysom, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Afghanistan, on Monday delivered his three-monthly report to the United Nations Security Council and said security related incidents throughout Afghanistan have increased.

He said security developments combined with slow economic growth, growing political pressures and expression of public discontent underlined the challenges faced by the Afghan government, Tolo News reported.

He furthered the temporary seizure by the Taliban of Kunduz city marked the increased intensity of the conflict, which in turn had a major impact on civilians.

In addition, the deterioration of security across the north dealt a major setback to government.

In his report, Haysom said the overall level of security incidents in the country increased and intensified between 1 August and 31 October against the same period last year.

“The temporary seizure by the Taliban of Kunduz city, as well as 16 district centres, primarily across the north … underscored the challenges faced by the government and security forces in maintaining stability across the country,” he said.

In the wake of these developments, international security partners pledged to revise planned troop commitments under the bilateral security agreement.

However, he said that as a consequence of the increased risks posed by the conflict, “civilian actors, including the United Nations, curtailed programme activities and temporarily relocated staff from Kunduz, Baghlan, Badakhshan and Faryab provinces”.

Haysom said that between 1 August and 31 October, 6,601 security-related incidents involving civilians were recorded by the UN. He said this represented a 19 percent increase against the same period last year when 5,516 incidents were recorded.

He stated that in addition to capturing Kunduz city, the Taliban seized an additional 16 district centers – mostly in the north but also in the west (Farah) and south (Helmand and Kandahar).

“Afghan National Security Forces were able to regain control of Kunduz city as well as 13 district centres by 31 October,” he said.

But he added that according to current assessments, “control of approximately 25 per cent of districts remains contested throughout the country.”

He went on to say the development highlighted critical deficiencies in the capabilities of the Afghan security forces, “including in the areas of logistics and planning, intelligence and air support.”

Haysom said the presence of Daesh also remains a concern particularly in Nangarhar province.

On the issue of human rights, he said UNAMA documented 3,693 civilian casualties (1,138 people killed and 2,555 injured) between 1 August and 31 October. He said this reflected an increase of 26 percent compared to the same period last year.

The conflict meanwhile continued to have a devastating impact on children.

Haysom reported that over the three-month period 303 incidents involving children were reported – 159 were killed and 505 were injured.

This however reflected a decrease against the same period last year, but Haysom said child casualties continued to account for close to a fourth of all civilian casualties.

Meanwhile, on the subject of highly volatile Helmand province, Haysom said clashes between security forces and insurgents intensified during the three-month period resulting in the displacement of about 2,054 families.

In addition, he said “Afghanistan continued to host approximately 227,000 refugees from Pakistan, who crossed into the south-east part of the country as a result of military operation in North Waziristan.”

Haysom went on to say that between 1 August and 31 October, 42 aid workers were abducted, 21 humanitarian workers were killed in attacks and 74 incidents involving attacks against humanitarian personnel, assets and facilities were recorded.

In conclusion Haysom said Afghanistan continues to face formidable security, economic and political challenges and that Afghan civilians continue to bear the brunt of the conflict “as they are caught in the crossfire, victimized by indiscriminate attacks and subject to targeted killings.”

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