UN Report: Unprecedented Number of Civilian Casualties in Afghanistan

Bloodiest three month period in Afghanistan on record

Escalating attacks by both US forces and the Taliban over the summer have meant a higher toll among Afghan civilians as well. Indeed, the latest UN report covering July to September found it the bloodiest three month period in Afghanistan since they started keeping data in 2009.

Up 42% from the same period in 2018, the report found 174 deaths and 3,139 injuries among civilians. Total casualties in the first nine months of the year are over 8,000, again the highest figure in years.

The UN emphasized the casualties caused by “anti-government elements” but casualties rose in all categories over the last three months, and the rate of US attacks across Afghanistan have been surging in particular over the past few months, with Trump scrapping the peace plan.

The UN report rightly identified a big problem on both sides as being a belief that the war can still be resolved militarily. While they again tried to pin this position on the Taliban primarily, the Taliban did negotiate an entire deal right to the end to be signed, only for the US to back out at the last moment.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.