According to a UN report, released on Wednesday, on security in Afghanistan, the situation remains “intensely volatile”.
The three-monthly report on Afghanistan, provided a summary of key political and security developments and regional and international events relating to Afghanistan.
The report stated that between 1 March and 31 May, the United Nations recorded 6,252 security-related incidents, which represents a two per cent increase against the same period in 2016. In line with established trends, armed clashes accounted for the majority (64 percent) of security incidents, followed by improvised explosive devices (16 percent).
Targeted killings and abductions decreased by four per cent compared with the same period in 2016. The eastern and southern regions were the most volatile, with a 22 per cent increase in incidents in the eastern region compared with the same period in 2016.
The report stated that Taliban focused their attacks on Badakhshan, Baghlan, Farah, Faryab, Helmand, Kunar, Kunduz, Laghman, Sar-e-Pul, Zabul and Uruzgan
Provinces and that Taliban attacks against the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces around Lashkargah and surrounding districts in Helmand were repelled
after the Afghan National Army Special Forces received support through international military-conducted air strikes.
The number of air strikes was significantly higher (112 percent) compared with the same period in 2016.
The report also stated that media workers and civil society actors continued to face intimidation and abuse from anti-government elements.
Meanwhile, António Guterres, the UN Secretary General stated in the report that he had visited Afghanistan to express his solidarity with government and the people of Afghanistan following the attacks in Kabul on 31 May and 3 June.
“I left the country deeply concerned about the deteriorating security situation, which has caused not only immense human suffering but also significant internal displacement, as I witnessed during a meeting with internally displaced men and women.
“Despite their dire living conditions, their courage and unwavering commitment to contributing to a prosperous Afghanistan should inspire us all to support them concertedly. Peace remains the foundation for the country’s sustainable development,” he said.
He said that during his visit, President Ashraf Ghani and CEO Abdullah Abdullah had expressed their deep concern over the proliferation of different terrorist groups in Afghanistan.
He also stated that the recent meeting between Ghani and Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, provided hope for an improvement in bilateral relations, “an essential condition for more effective counter-terrorism action.”
He said government was making progress in terms of introducing reforms and addressing the problem of corruption.
He said the unrelenting nature of the conflict has affected morale and is a matter that the government believes must be addressed.
“The heavy toll of the fighting on civilians, particularly on women and children, reflects the need for all parties to the conflict to take urgent steps to halt the killing and maiming of civilians,” he said.
Click here for full report