UN: risks to health, education in Afghanistan "deeply troubling"

The United Nations Monday gave a grim assessment of the risks to education and healthcare services in Afghanistan, with teachers and doctors targeted and infrastructure ruined by years of conflict.

The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and UNICEF documented hundreds of incidents affecting access to healthcare and education in a report that covers a three-year period from January 2013. 

Nicholas Haysom, the UN secretary-general's special representative in Afghanistan and head of UNAMA, described the situation as “deeply troubling.” 

“It is simply unacceptable for teachers, doctors and nurses to be subjected to violence or threats and for schools and medical facilities to be misused or attacked,” he said.

The report counted dozens of attacks against clinics, with the number of attacks in 2015 - as well as the number of health personnel killed or injured - more than doubling compared to previous year.

In the most high-profile such incident last year, a hospital run by charity Medecins Sans Frontieres was bombed by US forces in October, killing 42 people. The US said the strike was the result of human error.

At least 11 education workers were killed and 49 were kidnapped last year, the UN report said.

The violence forced the closure of around 370 educational institutions, affecting 139,000 students and 600 students, it added.

The situation was worse in southern Afghan provinces including Kandahar, Helmand, Ghazni, Zabul and Wardak, where Taliban insurgents were more active, according to the Education Ministry.

The increased activity of the Islamic State militant group has added to the level of violence in some areas, officials said.

 

Last update: Mon, 18/04/2016 - 13:24
Author: 

More from World

Four dead in Gaza-Egypt border tunnel after flooding causes collapse

Four men who had gone missing after an illegal smuggling tunnel connecting the Gaza Strip with Egypt collapsed on...

Uzbekistan holds presidential election after death of longtime ruler

Uzbekistan is holding presidential elections on Sunday following the death of the former Soviet state's longtime...

Report: Leader of Islamic State North Caucasus branch killed

Five militants, including the leader of Islamic State's North Caucasus branch, were killed Saturday in the Russian...

Watchdog: Over 60 per cent of east Aleppo captured by Syrian regime

More than 60 per cent of the rebel enclave of eastern Aleppo has now fallen to Syrian government forces, a...

Nine dead, 25 missing after fire at California warehouse party

At least nine people died and 25 were missing after a fire broke out during a party at a warehouse in the US state...