"When we see civilians being deliberately targeted, you wonder how long that this (has) to go on", Tadamichi Yamamoto, the UN's special representative in Afghanistan, told a press conference in Kabul yesterday. Though the group has been weakened by increasing air strikes by USA forces, it still wields enormous clout in Afghan countryside holding many areas.
The deadliest attack since the United Nations mission began recording civilian casualties in 2009 was in Kabul on May 31 when a suicide attacker detonated a truck bomb, killing 92 civilians and injuring 491.
In a bluntly worded statement, the US State Department responded to the latest offer by saying: "The Taliban statement alone does not show [a] willingness to engage in peace talks".
The Taliban wrote on Wednesday, to the American people that they wanted to end Afghanistan's 17-year battle, however, stated that the message should not be seen as a sign of weakness and fight against U.S. forces would go on.
The 2017 report, launched in Kabul, revealed a decline compared to 2016 when 11,434 casualties - 3,510 dead, 7,924 injured - were recorded, Efe news agency reported. It is their master's propaganda to garner domestic support for the Taliban.
A spokesperson for the USA state department said the Taliban was welcome to join peace talks, but added that the onus was now on the insurgents to end their campaign of violence.
"Insisting on prolonging the war in Afghanistan and maintaining American troop presence is neither beneficial for America nor for anyone else, rather it endangers the stability of the entire world", a copy of the letter posted on a Taliban website says. The letter also drew attention of the U.S. casualties in the Afghan war.
Even after Trump's comments, Tillerson's deputy, John Sullivan, said United States policy remained the pursuit of Afghan-led talks with the Taliban, and suggested Trump's remarks referred to a refusal to talk to hardliners while attacks were under way.
The Taliban have not claimed responsibility for either of the two attacks. "The recent attacks speak louder than these words", said the spokesman, Captain Tom Gresback.
The Taliban has released an open letter seeking "peaceful dialogues" and urging Americans to pressure their government to withdraw troops from their almost two-decade entanglement in Afghanistan. "This can never mean that we are exhausted or our will has been sapped", they said.
The letter from the Taliban leadership was released in English, Pashto, Dari, Arabic and Urdu languages.
The terrorists only mentioned the Afghan government to deride it on various grounds.
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The study, published Monday in the medical journal JAMA Internal Medicine , analyzed data from the U.S. The overall increase amounted to 142 additional deaths over the 25-year study period.