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    Afghan security personnel sit on atop an armoured vehicles amid an ongoing battle with Taliban militants in the Gereshk district of Helmand province on July 22, 2017

    Almost 60 People Killed During Parliamentary Elections in Afghanistan - UN

    © AFP 2018 / NOOR MOHAMMAD
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Almost 60 people were killed and over 370 sustained injuries as a result of the attacks perpetrated by anti-government militants during the recently-held parliamentary elections in Afghanistan, a report prepared by the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) revealed on Tuesday.

    "The '2018 Elections Violence' report documents how on 20 October and subsequent days when delayed polling took place, UNAMA verified 435 civilian casualties (56 deaths and 379 injured). Most civilian casualties occurred on 20 October, with 388 civilian casualties (52 deaths and 339 injured) from election-related violence. This is the highest level of civilian harm compared to the four previous elections held in Afghanistan," the report said, as quoted on the UNAMA official website.

    According to the report, the attacks were perpetrated mainly by the Taliban movement, which intended to intimidate voters. A total of 23 children have fallen victims of the attacks and almost 80 others were injured, the report added.

    "The report documents grave concerns over the numerous attacks by Anti-Government Elements, mainly Taliban*, directed at civilian objects and populated civilian areas during the elections, including attacks against schools used as polling centers. These attacks were mainly carried out using indirect-fire systems such as rockets, grenades and mortars, as well as improvised explosive devices (IEDs), all of which have indiscriminate effects," the report said.

    Almost 40 percent of all civilian casualties were inflicted by indirect fire, while improvised explosive devices accounted for 23 percent of casualties and another 12 percent were caused by gunfire, according to the report.

    "The report also highlights a pattern of threats, intimidation and harassment, including abductions, carried out by the Taliban prior to the elections. These incidents, taken together with a series of public statements made by the Taliban on the elections, reveal a deliberate campaign intended to disrupt and undermine the electoral process, and deprive Afghan citizens of their right to freely participate in the political process without fear," the report added.

    READ MORE: Taliban Militants Capture Military Base in Central Afghanistan — Reports

    Afghanistan held its first parliamentary election since 2010 on October 20-21, after postponing the vote for security reasons. The election was opposed by the Taliban militants, who refused to recognize it and announced their intention to sabotage the electoral process. The parliamentary election in the southern Kandahar province was not held until October 27 due to the unstable security situation in the region.

    READ MORE: Afghanistan More Divided Than Ever After 17 Years of War

    *Taliban is a terrorist organization, banned in Russia

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    report, attacks, parliamentary elections, UNAMA, Taliban, Afghanistan
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