KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A report released by the U.N. mission in Afghanistan shows an 8 percent rise in the number of civilians killed or wounded as a result of ground battles between security forces and insurgents.
The findings released Sunday reflect the movement of insurgents into built-up areas in the three months since NATO forces ended their combat mission.
The report by the U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan says ground fighting killed 136 civilians and wounded another 385 in the first three months of the year. It says ground fighting remains the leading cause of conflict-related death for women and children.
It said total civilian casualties meanwhile declined by 2 percent during those three months compared to the same period last year, to 655 dead and 1,155 wounded.