– Nearly 2,300 civilians were killed or wounded in suicide bombings and attacks in Afghanistan in 2017, more than any previous year of the conflict on record, a UN report said Thursday.
The figures come as militants ramp up their assaults on urban areas, after US President Donald Trump said last August the American presence in Afghanistan would remain open-ended and Washington stepped up airstrikes on rural militant strongholds.
The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) reported that civilian deaths across the country dipped by nine percent in 2017, with 10,453 total civilian casualties including 3,438 deaths and 7,015 wounded.
But as the Taliban and the Islamic State group have come under more pressure they have increasingly carried out indiscriminate assaults in cities.
As a result, casualties from suicide bombings and attacks jumped by 17 percent.