The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said in a report that the ongoing peace talks have not diminished the intensity of violence in Afghanistan and its impact on civilians as the civilian casualties remained high.
The report said that the air bombardments, night raids, and attacks conducted in both rural and populated areas result in the killing and maiming of women, men, and children who had no part in the fighting.
“Homes, mosques, schools, markets and health care facilities are being hit,” it said.
“Too little attention is being paid to the suffering of civilians. They must be protected and respected at all times”, said ICRC’s head of delegation in Afghanistan, Juan-Pedro Schaerer in the report.
The ICRC calls on all parties to the conflict that the medical workers, too, must be protected and respected by all sides.
Attacks against health care providers and facilities are too high, with 59 incidents in the first half of 2019. All sides must allow patients unhindered access to health services regardless of their affiliation, it said.
Attacking a single doctor or nurse undermines life-saving healthcare for everyone. This must stop, said Schaerer.
The ICRC is also deeply concerned about the fate of people detained by all sides in relation to the conflict, regardless of the side which is holding them.
“Detainees must have access to health care, to basics such as clean water, clothing, and hygiene items, and contact with their families,” according to the report.
Though humanitarian needs continue to grow, the security situation makes it difficult for help to reach those in need of food, water, shelter and security, it said.
This year has seen the highest number of incidents involving humanitarian workers in last few years, it added.