Starting over in one of the deadliest places in the world

Two boys pass members of a Taliban elite force Two boys pass members of a Taliban elite force Jim Huylebroek

30 October 2020

Defined as one of the deadliest places for civilians, Afghanistan tries to strengthen the relationship between local stakeholders and UN Agencies

The issue of security is key in Afghanistan. In fact, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) has reported that between January and September more than 2,000 people were killed and more than 3,800 injured, with 45% of the killings attributed to the Taliban and 23% to government forces. In addition, the recent Taliban-Government Peace Conference led to a further increase in violence. Therefore, UNAMA has recently described the country as one of the deadliest places in the world for civilians.

In recent days, a meeting was held between the United Nations (UN) agencies, in particular UNAMA, and the local authorities of the southern Afghan province of Kandahar, former Taliban stronghold and to this day the theatre of several clashes.  The summit showed a broad consensus on the idea of greater cooperation and synergy in areas related to peace, development and humanitarian assistance as drivers for improved conditions in the region.

Many of the activities of the UN agencies are already being carried out in close cooperation with local authorities and civil society, but it was highlighted how the main obstacles to their work remain the issues related to the security of operations. Following the US-Taliban agreement, the former is planning its gradual withdrawal from the country and is using the timing of this re-entry to end the stalemate of the Taliban-Government Peace Conference. While there is a willingness to reduce violence, doubts about how UN agencies and civil society will operate in a post-American Afghanistan remain.


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Author: Matteo Consiglio; Editor: Margherita Curti

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