News ID: 264953
Published: 0102 GMT January 28, 2020

US bombing of Afghanistan hit 10-year high in 2019

US bombing of Afghanistan hit 10-year high in 2019

The number of bombs dropped by the United States on Afghanistan in 2019 was the highest figure recorded in at least a decade, according to the US Air Force.

The US Air Forces Central Command reported that US warplanes dropped 7,423 separate munitions on targets in Afghanistan in 2019, a major rise in bombings in the war-hit country compared to the peak of former president Barack Obama’s “surge,” in 2009, when 4,147 bombs were dropped, Presstv Reported.

The US military has stepped up its airstrikes on Afghanistan since President Donald Trump was elected in 2016 as the White House removed earlier restrictions that provided greater oversight over aerial attacks aimed to prevent civilian casualties.

The United Nations (UN) and rights groups have repeatedly expressed concern that the spike in the air raids across the country has resulted in a significant increase in civilian casualties.

According to a UN report released last year, 717 civilians were killed in Afghanistan during the first half of 2019, an increase of 31% compared to the same period in 2018. Most of the casualties were caused by airstrikes, the report said.

The increase in bombings comes as the Taliban militants are engaged in on-and-off talks with Washington aimed at ending America’s longest war.

The US invaded Afghanistan in October 2001 and overthrew a Taliban regime in power at the time. But insecurity has spiked, and US forces have remained bogged down there through the presidencies of George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and now Donald Trump.

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