70 civilians killed, 180 injured in Kunduz battle
KUNDUZ CITY (Pajhwok): Nearly 70 civilians were killed and 180 others wounded in the Kunduz battle, whose victims have demanded severe punishment for the perpetrators.
On Sept. 28, the Taliban overran Kunduz City but security personnel retook the provincial capital two weeks later. Dozens of civilians were killed and more than 13,000 others displaced to Kabul, Badakhshan and Takhar provinces.
In an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News, the acting governor said he had received reports about the killing of nearly 70 civilians, including women, children, and injuries to 180 others.
Several people have since been missing after the fall of Kunduz, according to Hamdullah Danishi. It remains unclear whether they have been killed or have sought refuge in other provinces.
With officials still trying to find the exact number of casualties, relatives of the victims have asked for the punishment of those involved in the fall of the city.
A resident of the city, Abdul Ghafoor, said he lost his nine-years-old and 13-years-old sons in the Kunduz battle. They were shot dead after coming out of home in search of bread.
“I gave them money to bring bread (locally called naan) from a bakery as we had not eaten anything for two days. After a while, both my sons were killed in crossfire,” the man added.
He asked the government to punish the people who caused casualties on civilians, destroyed houses and other welfare buildings in Kunduz City.
“Both Taliban and security personnel would open fire at everyone coming out of home. As we have no exact figure of civilian casualties, we can say the incident claimed the lives of hundreds of people,” said the deputy head of the provincial council, Amruddin Wali.
He asked the officials concerned to complete their probe into civilian fatalities and compensate the victims’ families as soon as possible.
Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) official Hayatullah Amiri voiced concern at the civilian casualties, saying a fact-finding team had been sent from Kabul to investigate human rights violations in Kunduz.
The delegation, having completed its investigation, would make public its findings on the website of AIHRC. The rights watchdog’s provincial office does not have complete details about the casualties.
At least 21 security personnel were killed and 70 others wounded in the clashes, in which 670 Taliban were also eliminated and 345 others injured, the acting governor said. Dozens of the dead militants were Pakistani, Arab, Chechen and Uzbek fighters, he concluded.
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