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Afghanistan must prosecute officials guilty of human rights abuses, says HRW

Human Rights Watch (HRW) called on Afghanistan to hold officials and commanders guilty of human rights abuses accountable, in a report detailing police, intelligence, and militia forces' responsibility for rights violations.

In a report entitled, “‘Today We Shall All Die’: Afghanistan’s Strongmen and the Legacy of Impunity”, HRW said there was long standing impunity for rights abuses committed by figures connected to the Afghan government.

Phelim Kine, deputy Asia director at HRW, said,

“The previous Afghan government and the United States enabled powerful and abusive individuals and their forces to commit atrocities for too long without being held to account.”

Stating that plans to launch a national action plan to eliminate torture were a welcome step,  Mr Kine added that “the United States, which helped install numerous warlords and strongmen after the overthrow of the Taliban, should now lead an international effort to support the new government to remove serious human rights abusers from their ranks.”

“The Afghan government and its supporters should recognize that insecurity comes not only from the insurgency, but from corrupt and unaccountable forces having official backing,” Mr Kine said. 

“Afghanistan’s international allies have exacerbated the problem by prioritizing short-term alliances with bad actors over long-term reforms. It’s time for this pathology to end.”

See more from HRW here.

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