A decade after it began, the armed conflict in Afghanistan again incurred a greater human cost in 2011 than in previous years. The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) documented 3,021 civilian deaths in 2011, an increase of eight percent over 2010 (2,790 civilian deaths) and a 25 percent increase from 2009 (2,412 civilian deaths). In 2012, UNAMA re-asserts the imperative for all parties to the conflict – Anti-Government Elements, and Afghan national and international military forces – to increase their commitment and efforts to protect civilians, and to comply fully with their legal obligations to minimize loss of life and injury among civilians.
The total area under opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan in 2011 was estimated at 131,000 hectares (ha), a 7% increase compared to 2010. 95% of total cultivation took place in nine provinces in the Southern and Western regions, which include the most insecure provinces in the country. This confirms the link between insecurity and opium cultivation observed since 2007. The number of poppy-free provinces decreased from 20 in 2010 to 17 in 2011 as Baghlan and Faryab provinces in the Northern region and Kapisa province in the Eastern region lost their poppy-free status. Potential opium production in 2011 was estimated at 5,800 mt, a 61% increase compared to 2010, when opium yields were much reduced due to plant diseases.
From October 2010 to August 2011, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) interviewed 379 pre‐trial detainees and convicted prisoners at 47 detention facilities in 22 provinces across Afghanistan. In total, 324 of the 379 persons interviewed were detained by National Directorate of Security (NDS) or Afghan National Police (ANP) forces for national security crimes ‐ suspected of being Taliban fighters, suicide attack facilitators, producers of improvised explosive devices, and others implicated in crimes associated with the armed conflict in Afghanistan. Interviews were conducted at facilities including ANP detention centres, NDS facilities, Ministry of Justice prisons and juvenile rehabilitation centres; as a result of transfers, the interviews dealt with detainees located in 24 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces. With two exceptions, Government officials from the ANP, NDS, Ministry of Justice and other departments cooperated with UNAMA and provided full access to detainees and facilities. UNAMA acknowledges the critical and extremely difficult role that NDS and ANP have in safeguarding national security in the current situation of armed conflict in Afghanistan. Torture and Abuse of Detainees by NDS and ANP UNAMA’s detention observation found compelling evidence that 125 detainees (46 percent) of the 273 detainees interviewed who had been in NDS detention experienced interrogation techniques at the hands of NDS officials that constituted torture, and that torture is practiced systematically in a number of NDS detention facilities throughout Afghanistan. Nearly all detainees tortured by NDS officials reported the abuse took place during interrogations and was aimed at obtaining a confession or information. In almost every case, NDS officials stopped the use of torture once detainees confessed to the crime of which they were accused or provided the requested information. UNAMA also found that children under the age of 18 years experienced torture by NDS officials. More than one third of the 117 conflict‐related detainees UNAMA interviewed who had been in ANP detention experienced treatment that amounted to torture or to other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.
It is no longer possible to redress the issue of the blockage of the horizon of the peace talks with the same means and methods that have been repeatedly tried and proven unsuccessful over the past years. The crisis is far too deep to be neglected, and what is more dangerous are attempts to simply circumvent it or postpone its explosion. It is neither possible, nor practical, nor acceptable to return to conducting business as usual, as if everything is fine. It is futile to go into negotiations without clear parameters and in the absence of credibility and a specific timetable. Negotiations will be meaningless as long as the occupation army on the ground continues to entrench its occupation, instead of rolling it back, and continues to change the demography of our country in order to create a new basis on which to alter the borders.
A leaked document from the United Nations regarding post-conflict deployment to Libya and discussing the possible continued role of NATO in military peacekeeping operations.
The Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) is a conventional armed force with a mandate to protect and to maintain internal security. It carries out its mandate mainly through ground forces, including Popular Defence Force (PDF) militia, as well as an air force and navy. The Supreme Commander of the armed forces, Lieutenant General Omar Hassan Ahmad el-Bashir, holds both the posts of National President and Commander-In Chief of the Armed Forces and People’s Defence Forces (PDF). For operational purposes he exercises this power through the Minister of Defence (currently major-general Bakri Hassan Saleh). The Minister appoints a Commander of the Armed Forces and Chief of General Staff (currently, general Abbas Arabi) who, together with five Deputy Chiefs of Staff (Operations, Intelligence, Logistics, Administration, Training and Morale), form the Committee of the Joint Chiefs of Staff or Command Group. The air force and navy are individual services under the commander-in-chief.
Globally, UNODC estimates that, in 2009, between 149 and 272 million people, or 3.3% to 6.1% of the population aged 15-64, used illicit substances at least once in the previous year. About half that number are estimated to have been current drug users, that is, having used illicit drugs at least once during the past month prior to the date of assessment. While the total number of illicit drug users has increased since the late 1990s, the prevalence rates have remained largely stable, as has the number of problem drug users, which is estimated at between 15 and 39 million.
The number of private security guards is now almost twice that of police officers, as governments around the world outsource many of their security functions, according to a new report based on data compiled by the United Nations. Yet, despite the rapid growth of the private security sector, which now employs an estimated 20 million documented personnel worldwide, these staff hold far fewer firearms than do state security forces, the annual Small Arms Survey reveals. The 2011 edition of the survey, published today by the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, finds that private security staff personnel in 70 countries measured hold no more than four million firearms, compared to 26 million held by police and law enforcement officials, and 200 million held by members of national armed forces.
United Nations Department of Peace-keeping Operations Civilian Police Handbook from October 1995.
QUESTION: Can you explain why, if the United States is proud of its human rights record, that the UN special rapporteur has complained that you’re not allowing him independent access to Bradley Manning?
The result of this assessment indicates that the current high price of opium did not produce an increase in opium cultivation in the highest cultivating provinces of Hilmand and Kandahar. In these two provinces the cultivation is expected to decrease in 2011. The reasons for this development were multiple and differed from area to area. In parts of Hilmand and Kandahar, farmers reported the persistence of cold and dry climate conditions which led to crop failure as the poppy would not germinate. There also been a changing political environment in Hilmand with the Governor taking initiatives to convince elders and farmers to reduce the amount of poppy planted. This was not systematically captured by the survey, but it may have played a role as well. In both provinces, military operations were conducted by Afghan and international forces around the time of poppy planting in main poppy cultivating areas. Although these operations were not directed against poppy farmers, the coincidence of troupes being present at planting time may also have discouraged farmers from planting poppy.
A review of the city of Zawiyah was conducted using a satellite image acquired 8 March 2011 to document impacts of fighting between Libyan Government and armed opposition forces. This fighting took place between 24 February and 10 March, when Libyan Government forces declared control of the city. Satellite imagery analysis sought to identify evidence of fighting and damage in the area. Armoured vehicles, road blocks consisting of sand and other materials, excavated areas, and possible scorch marks are visible in the satellite image. In addition, significant numbers of light trucks are apparent in groups and convoys throughout much of the city.
There are two functional security checkpoints along the main road between the Tunisian-Libyan border crossing at Ra’s Ajdir and the town of Abu Kammash 19km to the east, as based on an analysis or satellite imagery acquired on 3 and 5 March 201 1 Both are likely permanent locations established before the present crisis. Although there are clear indications that these checkpoints are actively controlling road traffic, there are however no associated large concentrations of either people or vehicle traffic leading to the checkpoints, strongly suggesting that these sites are NOT responsible for the drop in the number of people reaching the border at Ra ‘s Ajdir, as observed on 3 and 4 March 2011. It is possible that there are additional security checkpoints or temporary roadblocks located east of Abu Kammash which could be responsible for the reduction in traffic. UNITARJUNOSAT will continue to task and analyze additional satellite imagery along this transport corridor leading to the Tunisian border.
This atlas provides baseline geographic information over Tripoli, Libya. It is produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT in support of international humanitarian assistance to the people of Libya. The atlas is created to respond to the needs of UN agencies and their partners. It is intended to provide objective geographic information and has been designed for easy printing and readability on A4 and A3 paper.
United Nations Libya General Logistics Planning Map from March 3, 2011.
This is a satellite-based quantitative analysis of the newly-established transitional camp for displaced peoples fleeing the conflict in Libya, located along the southern side of highway route P1, 8.5 kilometers west of the Ra’s Ajdir border crossing facility in Ben Guerdane, Tunisia. This assessment provides an estimate of the number of tent shelters erected within the camp, the average approximate tent size, and the derived potential current population capacity, as based on satellite imagery recorded on the morning of 3 March 2011.
The military-strategic intent is to assist the parties in CPA implementation by effectively monitoring and verifying the ceasefire and security arrangements, and by contributing to maintaining a stable and secure environment. The UNMIS military component will deploy its forces in a dynamic manner in its Area of Responsibility (AOR) comprising the ceasefire zone (CFZ), conduct robust mobile operations to monitor and verify redeployment of forces as per the ceasefire arrangements, and maintain visible UN presence in areas of potential conflict.
According to a series of classified reports from NATO and the UN recently published by this site, the recent elections in Afghanistan were marred by “unprecedented” levels of violence including voter intimidation, kidnapping of election workers and candidates, as well as attacks on polling stations and ballot distribution systems. A confidential United Nations “Joint Security Analysis” covering the week of the elections states that the country experienced a “massive increase” in violence “due to an unprecedented peak of security incidents recorded on Election Day 18 September.” In fact, there was such a significant and “unprecedented” increase in violence leading up to the elections that this created a significant decrease in subsequent attacks because insurgent forces were literally running out of ammunition.
Confidential United Nations Department of Safety and Security Afghanistan Elections Daily Situation Reports from September 16-17 2010.
In an effort to facilitate quicker analysis of recently published documents, we are trying to encourage people to join this site and respond to some recently created forum topics. Earlier this week, we published 13 NATO Weekly Security Narratives, ranging from August 6 – October 24 2010. These narrative reports are each between about 10 and 30 pages and at least three of them are labeled NATO Restricted. All of the NATO documents are labeled FOUO (For Official Use Only). These narratives contained detailed analytical summaries of Weekly SIGACTs reporting in all regions of Afghanistan throughout the dates mentioned. They contain significant and detailed information regarding the current state of U.S. military efforts in the region and reflect a more unbiased view of security conditions. We have also published 11 Confidential United Nations documents spanning nearly the same time period. Together with the NATO reports, these documents present a nearly up-to-date view of significant events throughout Afghanistan, including political assassinations, anti-U.S. demonstrations, and Taliban intimidation of candidates in recent Afghan elections.
United Nations Afghanistan Security Incident graphs spanning from 2003-September 2010.
Eleven confidential reports from the United Nations Department of Safety and Security regarding operations in Afghanistan from August 6 to October 21, 2010.
UN Afghanistan Assassination Distribution Maps January-July 2010.
Stability in Afghanistan – where it exists – is terribly fragile. Security is a daily concern for Afghan people, and even those living in more secure areas of the country face a fluid and volatile security situation that sees rapid changes, often for the worse. Central government control is tenuous, especially in rural areas and parts of the country that are the scene of conflict with insurgents. Access to even the most basic of government services – health, education, electricity – is tenuous at best and often unavailable. Complicating matter exponentially is the extreme poverty of Afghanistan – a country struggling with some of the most daunting statistics in the world for literacy, maternal mortality, food security, and life expectancy. In this context, simply to survive from one day to the next is a terrible challenge for many people.