UN accuses Afghan Taliban of killings and human rights violations

The United Nations on Wednesday blamed the Taliban for hundreds of human rights violations in Afghanistan since seizing power last year, including summary executions and torture.

“There is no doubt that the results of our report are very serious,” Markus Putzel, acting head of the UN mission in Afghanistan, told a press conference in Kabul.

The Taliban have always denied allegations of human rights violations since they toppled the previous Western-backed government, but a UN mission report released Wednesday cites numerous violations.

The report documents 160 allegations of extrajudicial executions, 56 cases of torture and ill-treatment, and more than 170 arbitrary arrests or detentions of former government officials and members of the national security forces since August.

The most common methods of torture include kicking, punching, slapping, beating with cables and pipes, and using electric shock devices.

The report also documents more than 200 cruel, inhuman or degrading punishments, including beatings of shopkeepers for not attending mosques, and more than 100 cases of excessive use of force.

Since the end of the war in Afghanistan, the security situation in the country has improved significantly, while civilian casualties have been significantly reduced.

The Taliban claim to have the support of the vast majority of the people, but have returned to the strict application of Sharia, as they did during their first rise to power between 1996 and 2001, which has led to significant restrictions on women’s rights.

A United Nations report documented 87 incidents of violence against women and girls, including murder, rape, suicide, forced marriage, child marriage, battery, assault and two honor crimes, while noting that none of these cases were officially reported. registered with the courts.

Among the cases reviewed in the report, a man and a woman were stoned to death for sexual relations.

“Impunity is rampant in Afghanistan,” said Fiona Fraser, spokesperson for the UN human rights mission in Afghanistan, and acknowledged that there may be more violations than reported.

She added that the UN mission in Afghanistan was “particularly concerned” about the involvement of the Taliban religious police and intelligence agencies in the abuse.

The UN mission said 700 civilians were killed and at least 1,400 injured in attacks, mostly linked to the local ISIS branch, and due to unexploded mines.

Government spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid rejected the report’s findings.

“Any arbitrary killing or arrest is prohibited in the country,” he wrote on Twitter. “Anyone who is arbitrarily killed or arrested is considered a criminal and faces the provisions of Sharia.”

Source: AFP.

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