A security guard was killed and several others were injured after the Taliban attacked the United Nations’ office in Afghanistan. Local media reports said the UN mission in Afghanistan on Friday confirmed the attack on its office by “anti-government elements” that led to the death of a security guard and injured several others.
Condemning the attack, the UN said: “The attack targeting entrances of the clearly marked United Nations facility was carried out by Anti-Government Elements.”
Citing sources from Herat, local media reported that the attack was conducted by the Taliban.
The group so far has not commented on the attack.
“This attack against the United Nations is deplorable and we condemn it in the strongest terms,” said Deborah Lyons, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan.
“Our first thoughts are with the family of the officer slain and we wish a speedy recovery to those injured.”
No UN personnel was hurt in the incident, in which entrances were attacked by rocket-propelled grenades and gunfire, UN said.
“The perpetrators of this attack must be identified and brought to account,” said Lyons.
Attacks against civilian UN personnel and compounds are prohibited under international law, and may amount to war crimes, UN said.
In the past few weeks, Afghanistan has witnessed a surge in violence as the Taliban has intensified their offensive against civilians and Afghan security forces with the complete pullback of foreign forces just a few weeks away.
According to figures by the State Ministry for Peace Affairs, during this period 5,777 civilians were also killed including women and children, the local media reports said.
US condemns attack on United Nations office
Meanwhile, the United States on Friday (local time) reiterated its call for an immediate reduction in violence in Afghanistan and stressed for negotiations without delay so that the people of the war-torn country can peacefully.
“We reiterate our call for an immediate reduction in violence in Afghanistan, and for all regional actors to encourage the parties to return to negotiations without delay so that the Afghan people can achieve a durable and just political settlement that brings peace and security they deserve,” the US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan in a statement.
The country has also condemned the attack on the United Nations compound in Afghanistan’s Herat.
“The United States strongly condemns the attack on the United Nations compound in Herat, Afghanistan that resulted in the death of an Afghan guard,” the National Security Advisor said.
He further added that the United Nations in Afghanistan is a civilian entity focused on supporting peace efforts, promoting the rights of all Afghans and providing humanitarian and development assistance.
Attacks against civilian UN personnel and facilities are prohibited under international law, he said.
The Afghan government forces have gained control over Herat’s Karokh district from the clutches of the Taliban.
At least 152 Taliban terrorists were also killed while 52 were injured during the fight, Afghan Defence Ministry spokesman Fawad Aman informed.
Over 190 out of 419 districts in Afghanistan have fallen to the Taliban in recent months.
(With ANI inputs)