Afghanistan: US-Backed Forces Killed More Afghan Civilians Than Taliban and ISIS Did So Far in 2019

US and Afghan forces killed more civilians than the Taliban in the first three months of 2019, according to a UN report released on Wednesday.
US and Afghan forces have killed more civilians for the first time than the Taliban and other insurgent groups, according to a UN report covering the first quarter of 2019 released on Wednesday. During this period, international and pro-government forces were responsible for the deaths of 305 civilians, compared to 227 civilians killed by the Taliban and other groups, according to the report by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA).

“Impunity” of Afghan forces. Most of the deaths occurred during air strikes or ground reconnaissance missions, mainly by Afghan forces, some of which “appear to be acting with impunity”, according to the report. “UNAMA calls on Afghan national security forces and international military forces to investigate and publish the results of investigations into suspected civilian casualties and to compensate victims appropriately,” the organization added.

The United Nations began compiling statistics on civilian casualties in 2009 as the security situation in Afghanistan deteriorated. These new figures are being made public as the United States, which has been militarily engaged in the country since 2001, intensifies its air operations while trying to negotiate a peace agreement with the Taliban, who currently control large parts of the country. The year 2018 was the deadliest year to date for Afghan civilians, with 3,804 killed according to UNAMA.

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