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UN uncovers disturbing rights abuses, killings in Afghanistan

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KABUL – In a comprehensive report released by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) on Monday, an alarming picture of human rights violations in Afghanistan from July to September has come to light. This report sheds light on distressing developments that have had a significant impact on various aspects of human rights in the country.

The report specifically focuses on the alleged killings of Hazara individuals and the destruction of their properties and crops in the Khas Uruzgan province district, with incidents occurring between June and August, initially surfacing through social media channels.

Within the detailed report, it is revealed that there were six documented cases of murder, five cases of property destruction, and two cases of Hazara persecution from July to September. UNAMA, in this document, has dedicated its attention to the ongoing human rights violations in Afghanistan under Taliban control during these critical months.

The report addresses several key issues, including restrictions on the occupational, educational, and mobility rights of women, casualties arising from the ongoing conflict, violent actions directed at former government officials, physical punishments, arbitrary detentions, and violations of media freedom.

While the report points to “unidentified individuals” as the perpetrators of the attacks on Hazara farmers in the province, it is important to note that there are suggestions of Taliban involvement in these incidents, although the report does not directly implicate the Taliban.

UNAMA’s new report firmly establishes the occurrence of at least six Hazara killings by “unidentified individuals,” five instances of property destruction, including homes and agricultural assets owned by the Hazara community in the province. Moreover, it confirms at least two cases of Hazara persecution by “unidentified individuals.”

Local media reports had previously indicated that 14 residents of Jo-i-Naw village in the Hazara-majority province of Oruzgan were systematically targeted and killed, with simultaneous efforts to force residents to abandon their homes. Both the victims and local residents have accused the Taliban of involvement in these acts of violence and mass killings against the Hazara community.

UNAMA’s records indicate a total of 800 documented cases of extrajudicial killings, torture, mistreatment, arbitrary detentions, imprisonment, and disappearances involving former government officials and security forces in the past two years. UNAMA calls upon the Taliban to immediately fulfill their amnesty commitment, although the Taliban continues to deny any allegations of mistreatment, characterizing them as isolated incidents.

In a significant development, the report reveals that on September 16, a Taliban delegation visited Oruzgan to investigate recent events and assess the security situation. Consequently, 16 suspects were detained and are currently awaiting trial. Despite the Taliban leader’s declaration of “amnesty,” UNAMA underscores the ongoing, substantial abuses against former government officials and security forces.

Following the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021, the threat of mass atrocities has heightened, disproportionately affecting vulnerable groups, especially ethnic and religious minorities. Afghanistan now ranks fourth globally in terms of the risk of new mass civilian killings. It has consistently been among the top three high-risk countries in recent assessments by the Early Warning Project. The Hazara community, in particular, is facing an alarming and widespread wave of attacks, further compounded by a history of persecution.Top of Form

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