A new report from the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan shows civilian casualties rising starkly in Afghanistan through the first nine months of 2018. The leading cause of civilian deaths is suicide attacks, which are up 46% over the previous year.
The report warned that the increasing number of “deliberate and indiscriminate” attacks against civilians may amount to a crime against humanity. They said most attacks show little targeting, though some appear to be directed at the Shi’ite minority.
Interestingly, while most of the general worsening of statistics in Afghanistan is the result of US escalation and Taliban gains, in this case the majority of the attacks are carried out by the ISIS-K affiliate in Afghanistan, while the Taliban accounts for only 40% of such attacks.
UNAMA reports released throughout the year have consistently shown record-high levels of civilian casualties. Other reports have consistently shown high casualty figures in general from combat and airstrikes as well.