KABUL: The United Nation has said more than 500 civilians, including more than 150 children, were killed due to fighting in Afghanistan since January this year.
A report by the world body pointed to disturbing increase in violence last month when it was hoped that the Afghan government and Taliban would commence peace negotiations, seek ways to defuse the conflict and prioritize efforts to protect all Afghans from the impact of COVID-19.
Meanwhile, The Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan and head of UNAMA Deborah Lyons has called on all parties to seize the opportunity offered by the Secretary-General’s call for a global ceasefire to focus collective efforts on fighting COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier, the prisoners swap between the Afghan government and the Taliban, which was planned to take place on Mar 31, had been postponed as no Taliban delegation arrived in Kabul.
Spokesperson for the National Security Council Javid Faisal had said Taliban delegation was due to visit Kabul for further technical discussions assisted by international committee of the red cross.
Under the Doha deal, 5,000 Taliban and 1,000 Afghan security personnel should be exchanged to facilitate direct talks between the two sides for a solution to the country’s prolonged conflict.