All measures being adopted to limit civilian casualties: RS
KABUL (Pajhwok): Following United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) protection of civilians in armed conflict annual report, the Resolute Support (RS) leaders said that all possible measures were being adopted to protect Afghan people and collectively do everything possible to limit civilian casualties.
A statement from the RS Public Affairs Office on Wednesday said that it had reviewed the UNAMA latest report and “we remain committed to our mission to Train, Advise, and Assist (TAA) our Afghan National Defense and Security Force (ANDSF) partners.”
According to a latest report released by the UNAMA, at least 3,700 civilians, including women and children, suffered casualties in the ongoing conflict in 2014.
The statement said that the previous International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission took great measures to reduce the possibility of civilian casualties. In fact, ISAF-related civilian casualties were reduced by approximately 70 percent in the past year, it said, adding that UNAMA now attributed approximately 2 percent of all Afghan civilian casualties to international military forces.
The report, released on Wednesday, said that 3,699 civilians have been killed and 6,849 others wounded during clashes between militants and security forces in Afghanistan in the current year, which shows 22 percent increase as compared to 2013. Most of the casualties, the report said were caused by militants.
The statement by the RS Public Affairs Office said: “We continue to improve our processes to limit civilian casualties. We are working with UNAMA, the UN Mine Action Service, and the Mine Action Coordination Center Afghanistan to reduce the hazards associated with Explosive Remnants of War (ERW). To date, we have cleared or transferred to ANDSF 117 training ranges and expect to have the remaining 102 training ranges cleared or transferred by the end of this year.”
Afghan security forces, it said also take great measures to reduce the possibility of civilian casualties. Efforts include refining training for security forces on the use of force, fielding nearly 200 explosive ordnance disposal teams, and the Ministry of Interior’s implementation of a ‘119’ call line for civilians to contact the Afghan police with information about suspicious or dangerous activity.
By contrast, the Taliban and other Anti-Government Elements (AGEs) continue to display total disregard for human life. In this year’s report, UNAMA attributed nearly 72 percent of all civilian casualties directly to AGEs. Their increased and indiscriminate use of improvised explosive devices and indirect fire attacks are taking a very high toll on the Afghan people, especially women and children.
Additionally, as reported by the UN earlier this month, Taliban involvement in criminal activities such as narcotics trafficking and illicit mining further illustrates their total lack of concern for the well-being of the Afghan people.
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