Civilian Casualties on the Rise
The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan announced a dramatic rise in civilian casualties in Afghanistan. According the UNAMA report, which released on Wednesday, civilian casualties in Afghanistan during the first half of 2013 have risen 24 percent with more than 1,500 people killed and more than three thousands wounded during last six months. According to the report, main reason for the rise in civilian casualties is that the Taliban and government forces are engaged in ground battles. The report is released at a time when on Wednesday 22 suicide attacker assaulted on Kandahar governor office and police headquarter. According to officials, five police officers and four civilians were killed during the fighting between police and the militants.
The ever high civilian casualties are reported at a time when there are widespread concerns about the future as the future of the country is uncertain amidst political crisis over the elections. The increase in civilian fatalities is mainly resulting from the sharp increase in insurgent attacks across the country and in major cities such as Kabul. The Taliban have recently intensified their campaign of violence, not only targeting government installations and security forces but also deliberately attacking on civilians and non-combatant actors.
This year is going to be a crucial year for Afghanistan as it is shaping the future with the ongoing problematic presidential elections and the security transition from NATO to Afghanistan security forces. However, there are potential threats ahead as the country struggles to find its way ahead for a democratic future. For past twelve years, the Afghans have been desperately in search of peace and tranquility. Afghans feels themselves in a dilemma, and a state of hope and fear is seen everywhere. There are signs of hopes with the ongoing political and security process and as there are fears and concerns of a possible rollback of the achievement of the past decade as well.
There are possibilities that the insurgent groups might further step up violence if the election crisis if further prolonged. The Taliban failed to disrupt the elections; however, they continue to pose a very serious security threat for the country. In recent months, there have been a series of attacks on government buildings, security installations and government officials in Kabul and other cities across the country. In recent months two years, the Taliban have intensified their attacks on major cities, particularly the capital Kabul.
It seems that the militant groups have developed a strategy of group suicide attacks on major cities and government buildings. The Taliban have well recognized the fact such attacks would work efficiently terrorize people and advance their propaganda of war campaign against the government of Afghanistan. The political and security conditions of the country and the uncertain process of peace talks with the Taliban highlight the need for reaching a security agreement with the US immediately so that it allows presence of NATO troops in Afghanistan after the international coalition pulls out the bulk of its troops from Afghanistan.