Amnesty International 2015/2016 Report: Afghanistan

A young man looks across the devastation caused by a massive truck bomb in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Aug. 7, 2015. A young man looks across the devastation caused by a massive truck bomb in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Aug. 7, 2015. © JOSH SMITH/STARS AND STRIPES

According to Amnesty International, Afghanistan continues to experience increasing insecurity due to insurgency and continuing failures of government to hold perpetrators of the violence accountable.

According to Amnesty International’s 2015/2016 report on Afghanistan, the country is continuing to experience violence and human rights violations. Much of the violence is stemming from insurgent groups, primarily Islamic State (IS) and the Taliban, but also includes pro-government groups. The Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) have been responsible for increased civilian deaths and human rights violations, including detentions, beatings, killings, and child rapes. Attacks by armed groups constitute 70% of civilian deaths according to the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA). The presence of these groups is also forcing the closure of schools and clinics. The report further revealed that the Afghan government is failing to hold individuals responsible for crimes and human rights violations. Human rights defenders are often targets of attacks and their cases are left unresolved, specifically women's rights defenders. Afghanistan has the second largest number of refugees and internally displaced people in the world. Armed conflict, insecurity, and natural disasters are causing the displacement. The position of women and girls is still precarious, but appears to be improving. More women are being engaged in government, but crimes against women are still high and under-reported. In September, the Regulation Against Sexual Harassment of Women and Girls was approved. The report indicates that overall, the country is still engaging in practices that restrict and violate human rights. Journalists are persecuted along with most forms of freedom of expression. Torture and other forms of ill-treatment is still common during detainment and incarceration. Further, Afghanistan still employs the death sentence, which often accompanies unfair trials. It was concluded that while Afghanistan has made some attempts to improve human rights and limit violence, they still have many areas to work on.

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