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UN deplores deadly attacks in Afghanistan

14 maggio 2015 | 13.26
LETTURA: 2 minuti

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The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan on Thursday strongly condemned the killing of at least 17 civilians in two separate attacks for which the Taliban has claimed responsibility.

“These deliberate attacks on civilians are atrocities,” said the Georgette Gagnon, UNAMA’s human rights director.

"Taliban statements on avoiding civilian casualties ring hollow when we set them against the latest killings," she said.

Fourteen civilians including four Indians, at least one Italian, a Briton and a US citizen died and several others were injured in a brazen gun attack at the Park Palace hotel in central Kabul late on Wednesday.

The Times of India quoted Afghan president Ashraf Ghani's special envoy as saying the gunmen had intended to assassinate Indian ambassador Amar Sinha, who they believed was at the hotel.

At the time of the attack, a well known Afghan singer was due to perform at a party taking place in the hotel's garden attended by over 50 guests.

"The attack was planned carefully to target the party in which important people and Americans were attending," the Taliban said in a statement claiming the assault.

Two suspected gunmen were reported to be among the dead - police said they were shot before they could carry out a suicide attack.

In the other attack on Wednesday, three civilians were killed and another two were wounded at the local government department of Haj and Religious Endowment in Lashkargah in southern Helmand province, UNAMA said.

A record 974 civilians were killed and 1,963 injured in the first four months of this year, a 16 percent increase over the same period in 2014, UNAMA said.

The surge in Taliban attacks have heightened a sense of insecurity in the Afghan capital and throughout the country following the withdrawal of most foreign troops.

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