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Afghanistan: Sunday airstrike killed 12 women and children from one family, UN mission reports

Afghanistan: Sunday airstrike killed 12 women and children from one family, UN mission reports

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 26 Sep 2018, 05:12 am

New York, Sept 26 (IBNS): Preliminary findings from the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) released on Tuesday, indicate that 12 women and children from a single family were killed in an airstrike that took place on Sunday, conducted by pro-Government forces.

They were sheltering in a house belonging to the family in the village of Mullah Hafez, Jaghato district, Maidan Wardak, when it was destroyed by an aerial missile. “Ten of those killed were children whose ages ranged from six, to 15. Eight were girls”, said a statement from the Mission.

“UNAMA is currently reviewing reports of civilian casualties from a number of alleged airstrikes in other parts of the country,” the statement continued. “UNAMA continues to work to verify whether Afghan or international military forces were responsible for the civilian casualties from recent strikes.”

The mission registered its “strong concern with the rising numbers of civilian deaths and injuries caused by aerial operations and urges all parties to take additional measures to prevent harm to the civilian population."UNAMA is mandated by the UN Security Council to establish the facts surrounding civilian casualties independently, in an effort to try and prevent civilian deaths in the future.

In figures also released on Tuesday, UNAMA said it had documented 353 civilian casualties from air attacks during the first six months of the year, with 149 registered deaths and 204 injured – a 52 per cent increase on the same period last year.

Approximately seven per cent of all civilian casualties in the Afghan conflict in the first half of 2018 were attributed to air operations.

The Mission attributed just over half of all civilian casualties from aerial attacks to the Afghan Air Force, 45 per cent to international military forces, and the remaining three per cent to unidentified pro-Government Forces.


UNAMA/Fraidoon Poya

 

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again; UNESCO regrets #HagiaSophia, #Turkey, #Istanbul, #HagiaSophiaMosqueAgain Istanbul/IBNS: Hagia Sophia, Turkey's iconic monument, a UNESCO World Heritage and one of the central attractions of its capital Istanbul, is no longer a museum. It has been turned back as a mosque though some 1500 years ago it was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque during the Ottoman time in 1453 while under Ataturk it was turned into a museum in 1935. The decision comes amid a growing rise of the Islamists in Turkey who had been demanding that it be restored as a mosque though Opposition leaders with secular credentials had been against the move. A top court in Turkey ruled that turning it into a museum in 1935 by modern Turkey's secular architect Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was illegal, paving the way for present Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare it as a mosque again and to open it for Muslim prayers. Erdogan made the announcement an hour after the court ruled the conversion to museum in 1935 as illegal and scrapped its status. "May it be beneficial," posted Erdogan on Twitter, sharing an official document on the change with his signature. UNESCO regrets In an immediate reaction, UNESCO said it "deeply regrets" the decision. UNESCO said it was "regrettable that the Turkish decision was not the subject of dialog nor notification beforehand". "UNESCO calls on the Turkish authorities to open a dialog without delay in order to avoid a step back from the universal value of this exceptional heritage whose preservation will be reviewed by the World Heritage Committee in its next session," the United Nation's cultural body said in a statement. Istanbul icon of beauty and wonderment According to Turkey's official tourism website, Hagia Sophia is a remarkable achievement in the history of architecture. and a living proof of mankind's revolt against the laws of physics and it calls it a monument whose importance transcends borders. It is one of UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage sites attracting millions of visitors across the world with its majestic grandeur

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again 11 Jul 2020, 01:37 pm