• publish: 15 October 2020
  • time: 4:31 pm
  • category: Politics
  • No: 15723

UNAMA calls for urgent end to violence and focus to be on peace

United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan on Thursday reiterated its calls for an end to violence in the country following five days of heavy clashes in the southern province of Helmand.

In a series of tweets, UNAMA said initial reports suggest civilians have been killed and wounded, including women and children. 

“Violence only heaps further hardship and misery on ordinary Afghans and undermines efforts for progress and building bridges between parties at the historic Afghanistan peace talks in Doha.”

“Civilians have borne the brunt of Afghanistan’s conflict. The number of civilians killed and injured – a key indicator of the intensity of violence – has so far been lower in 2020, but in recent weeks a worrying reversal seems to be emerging,” UNAMA stated. 

The mission added that civilians are routinely killed or injured in armed clashes with high casualties resulting from indirect weapons: mortars, rockets, grenades. “These civilians, including many children, must be protected from harm. The only way to do that is to stop the violence.”

“UNAMA reiterates the urgency to halt violence and to focus on achieving a peaceful negotiated settlement to the Afghanistan conflict,” they stated. 

Heavy clashes broke out on Saturday night across various areas in Helmand province, which has since forced tens of thousands of residents to flee their homes. 

Fighting has also been reported from areas on the outskirts of the provincial capital Lashkargah, where hundreds of families have sought refuge. 

Organizations said on Wednesday, at least 35,000 people have been displaced in the province after fleeing their homes. 

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