UN: Over 1,000 Civilians Killed Since Taliban Takeover Despite the end of the war in Afghanistan, numerous people continue to lose their lives violently since the Islamist Taliban assumed power in the country. From mid-August 2021 to the end of May 2023, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) recorded nearly 1,100 deaths and nearly 2,700 injuries from attacks in the country. Most of the victims were killed by explosives detonated in mosques, markets, or public places, according to a report released by UNAMA on Tuesday.
Civilian Casualties Decrease since Taliban Takeover, says UN According to the UN, the number of civilian casualties in the country has significantly decreased compared to the period before the Taliban’s takeover. In 2020, UNAMA reported over 3,000 deaths and 5,785 injured civilians. At that time, the Taliban were fighting against the Western-backed government in Kabul, while the terrorist group Islamic State (IS) carried out attacks in the country. IS has been in conflict with the Taliban.
UN Blames IS and “Anti-Government Elements” for Attacks in Afghanistan The UN primarily holds IS and unspecified “anti-government elements” responsible for the attacks since August 2021. The report stated that the minority Shia Hazara community has been particularly affected by targeted attacks for years in the predominantly Sunni country. The Sunni IS considers Shias as renegades of Islam and holds them in contempt.
Civilians Killed and Injured in Attacks on the Taliban, Reports UN The UN also reported that many civilians were killed or injured in attacks targeting the ruling Taliban. According to UNAMA, there were 63 deaths and 363 injuries in this context. The report cited an attack on the Taliban Ministry of Foreign Affairs in January 2022, where many ministry employees were killed, as an example.
UN Condemns Taliban for Suppressing Journalists and Distorting Casualty Figures The UN’s report also expressed concern that the Taliban systematically hindered journalists from reporting on attacks. Arbitrary arrests, detentions, mistreatment, and violence against media professionals visiting attack sites were reported. The casualty figures released by the Taliban authorities were described as “often inaccurate and unrealistic.”
Afghanistan’s Humanitarian Crisis Continues as Taliban Government Remains Unrecognized Since their takeover in the summer of 2021, the Taliban had promised to ensure greater security after decades of conflict in the country. However, the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan remains precarious, with the rights of women and girls being increasingly restricted. To date, no country in the world has recognized the Taliban government, and Western embassies have evacuated the country.