10,000 civilians killed, injured in Afghanistan in 2017

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Kabul, Feb 16 (IANS) More than 10,000 civilians were killed or injured in violent attacks in in Afghanistan last year, the UN has said.

The annual report released on Thursday by the UN’s Mission in Afghanistan (Unama) showed the figure had dropped by 9 per cent in 2017 from the previous year, reports the Guardian.

“The chilling statistics in this report provide credible data about the war’s impact, but the figures alone cannot capture the appalling human suffering inflicted on ordinary people,” Unama’s chief Tadamichi Yamamoto said here.

US President Donald Trump introduced a more aggressive strategy in Afghanistan in August last year, including a surge in airstrikes. Militants have retaliated with attacks in Kabul in the past few weeks, killing nearly 150 people.

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The total civilian toll last year was 3,438 killed and 7,015 wounded, according to the UN.

Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, called for the “perpetrators to be held accountable”, the Guardian reported.

Unama reported a 5 per cent rise in the number of women killed, at 359, with 865 injured. Child casualties stood at 3,179 (861 killed and 2,318 injured) – a 10 per cent drop from 2016.

The deadliest attack since the UN began documenting civilian casualties in 2009 was in Kabul on May 31, 2017 when a massive truck bomb killed 92 and injured 491.

More than 28,000 civilians have been killed and more than 52,000 wounded in Afghanistan since 2009 when UN officials started documenting the casualties.

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