Violence escalates in Afghanistan as US-Taliban peace talks collapse

Aftermath of the explosion in Kabul’s Green Village Aftermath of the explosion in Kabul’s Green Village Omar Sobhani/Reuters

16 September 2019

UN chief mission in Afghanistan calls for peace in a very difficult political climate

Taliban-claimed attacks in Afghanistan are systematically resulting in civilian casualties. On 2 September, a suicide attack in Kabul killed 16 people and wounded more than 100 and the violence is not likely to stop after the withdrawal of the United States (US) from the US-Taliban peace negotiations. The United Nations (UN) Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) counted more than 100.000 civilian casualties in Afghanistan since 2009 and 1.500 were registered in July 2019 only.

 The abrupt US withdrawal from the peace talks resulted in retaliations clashes in the Northern regions of Takhar, Baghlan, Kunduz, and Badakhshan as well as in a rocket-explosion near the US embassy in Kabul on the eve of the anniversary of 9/11. The peace negotiations were preparing the ground for the withdrawal of thousands of US troops from the country. Nevertheless, the talks were declared “dead” by US President Donald Trump, after a Taliban-claimed attack killed a US soldier earlier this month. In this particularly difficult political climate, the country is also preparing for new elections scheduled on 28 September.

 UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan Tadamichi Yamamoto urged for the cessation of violence and the suffering of the civilian population in Afghanistan, mentioning in this occasion the Kabul’s Green Village attacks. He also spoke in favour of an inclusive intra-Afghan negotiation process – as also did UN Secretary-General António Guterres – comprising “the whole spectrum of Afghan society” including women and youth. Finally, he stated that the UN is ready to help in this process and that the priority remains now to minimize the harm caused to civilians. 


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Author: Annette Savoca; Editor: Shrabya Ghimire

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