Taliban Continue to Attack, Intimidate Innocent Civilian Populace Responsible for 9 out of 10 Deaths

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Accord­ing to com­piled coali­tion, Afghan gov­ern­ment and Afghan Nation­al Secu­ri­ty Force logs and intel­li­gence reports, Tal­iban and Haqqani insur­gent-relat­ed attacks have been respon­si­ble for 26 inno­cent civil­ians killed and anoth­er 13 injured with­in the last sev­en days in east­ern Afghanistan.

All of the civil­ian casu­al­ties occurred with­in five of the 14 provinces that com­prise Region­al Com­mand-East and sev­er­al of the attacks are high­light­ed below.

On Aug. 6, a total of 12 local nation­al con­trac­tors were killed in two sep­a­rate attacks occur­ring in Kunar and Ghazni provinces respec­tive­ly when a radio-con­trolled impro­vised explo­sive device det­o­nat­ed and small arms fire fol­lowed. In both cas­es, the Afghan civil­ians were mem­bers of a con­struc­tion crew work­ing to improve the roads.

On Aug. 10, a unit from 173rd Brigade Com­bat Team, Task Force Bay­o­net, report­ed they were attacked by two to three ene­my fight­ers with rock­et-pro­pelled grenades in Log­ar province. The unit didn’t have pos­i­tive iden­ti­fi­ca­tion on the Tal­iban and did not return fire. One child was killed by the attack and two more were wound­ed by shrap­nel. The unit escort­ed the chil­dren and their father to the near­est hos­pi­tal where one child died of his wounds.

On Aug. 11, a 7-year-old Afghan boy was killed in Log­ar province when he reached down and touched a Tal­iban-emplaced impro­vised explo­sive device. The boy was in the area herd­ing sheep.

Also on Aug 11, the first day of Ramazan, Tal­iban fight­ers fired four rock­et-pro­pelled grenades in the vicin­i­ty of a mosque near Asad­abad. One of the grenades explod­ed near the mosque, break­ing win­dows and knock­ing down a tree. No one was injured in the attack but local work­ers had to quick­ly per­form exten­sive clean-up oper­a­tions to restore the mosque to ser­vice­able con­di­tion for Ramazan wor­ship.

Accord­ing to a report issued yes­ter­day by the Unit­ed Nations Assis­tance Mis­sion in Afghanistan, Afghan civil­ian casu­al­ties have increased 31 per­cent in 2010 com­pared to the same time peri­od in 2009. “Three quar­ters of all civil­ian casu­al­ties were linked to Anti-Gov­ern­ment Ele­ments (AGEs), an increase of 53 per­cent from 2009,” the report reads. In RC-East specif­i­cal­ly, the num­ber of civil­ian casu­al­ties caused by insur­gents is clos­er to nine out of ten, accord­ing to com­piled track­ing data.

“The delib­er­ate killing of unarmed, inno­cent Afghan civil­ians has unfor­tu­nate­ly become com­mon­place by the Tal­iban,” said Brig. Gen. War­ren E. Phipps, deputy com­mand­ing gen­er­al (sup­port), CJTF-101 and RC-East. “Coali­tion and Afghan Nation­al Secu­ri­ty Forces are con­tin­u­al­ly work­ing to stop these atro­cious acts. It is incom­pre­hen­si­ble how the Tal­iban can claim to care about the Afghan peo­ple, yet delib­er­ate­ly and reck­less­ly injure and kill them in their mis­guid­ed attempts to hold Afghanistan back from the peace and pros­per­i­ty it so rich­ly deserves,” Phipps added.

The lat­est attacks are demon­stra­tive of a sharp increase in the num­ber of Afghan civil­ians being killed and injured dai­ly since Mul­lah Omar reversed the Tal­iban stance on try­ing to avoid civil­ian casu­al­ties and ener­gized his fol­low­ers to delib­er­ate­ly attack ordi­nary Afghan cit­i­zens. Many of the vic­tims of these attacks are Afghan chil­dren at play as well as the very Afghan civil­ians who are engaged in work designed to improve infra­struc­ture in Afghanistan.

Press release
Com­piled from Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force Joint Com­mand News Releas­es

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