A UN report says the number of US assassination drone attacks in Afghanistan has increased 72 percent in 2012, causing more civilians deaths in the war-torn country.
In its annual report on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict, which was published on Tuesday, the UN also added that a total of 2,754 Afghan civilians were killed in the country last year, taking the toll to 14,728 since 2007.
The report also showed an alarming 20 percent jump in the number of women and girls killed or injured last year.
This comes after the United States stepped up its assassination drone attacks in Afghanistan. According to the US military data, Afghanistan was the main target of American assassination drone attacks in 2012, with some 450 strikes, which is more than double the previous year’s number.
Washington claims the targets of the drone attacks are al-Qaeda militants, but local officials and witnesses maintain that civilians have been the main victims of the attacks over the past few years.
The United States and its allies invaded Afghanistan in 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The offensive removed the Taliban from power, but insecurity continues to rise across the country, despite the presence of tens of thousands of US-led troops.