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The Taliban and Human Rights Essay

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Updated: Nov 8th, 2018

Several cases of human rights abuse have surfaced with accusations labeled against the extremist outfit called the Taliban based in Afghanistan. Classified by most countries as a terrorist group, the Taliban group has been in the international media for serious cases on human rights abuse in form of unlawful detention, assault, decapitation, conspiracy to commit genocide, and murder.

Local and international groups dealing with human rights issues in Afghanistan have issued strong condemnation reports and concrete evidence against the Taliban insurgents accused of serious atrocities threatening existence of mankind. Thus, this reflective treatise attempts to explicitly explore various issues of human rights abuse by the Taliban guerilla warfare outfit.

As per the NATO report of 2008, Taliban was responsible for up to “three fourth of all civilian casualties” (Gutman 221). The same report accused the outfit of human rights abuse and recommended induction in the international court for war crimes. As events unfolded, revelations in the report were mind boggling especially on the aggressive tactics employed by Taliban on their victim. As a matter of fact, the group adopted indiscriminate violence to take control of Afghanistan in unison with the international terrorist group called al-Qaida.

The group had no official uniform and could easily capture unsuspecting civilians who were then subjected to serious cruelty. Besides, they assumed the mandate of leadership in an organized, systematic, and highly structured system of conducting series of successful war campaigns that almost exterminate the minority Hazara community.

Despite these, the first serious case of abuse of human rights reported against this group was the suicide bomb attack in Kabul’s Finest Supermarket which claimed at least fourteen lives and wounded several others. Interestingly, the group readily accepted liability and even issued a strong statement suggesting more attacks.

Under leadership of commander Omar Muhammed Mullar, series of attacks were carried out targeting civilians. Every day, the local and international media would report of attack campaigns and showed images of mutilated bodies of civilians lying on the streets. Besides the accusation of mass murder, the Taliban was known for kidnapping its victims and demanding ransom.

To beat local authorities, the group had perfected the art of staying mobile and carrying their prisoners along. Since Taliban has no specific uniform and some form of military discipline, it became difficult to distinguish it from other militia groups. In an ironic move, the sadist commander Omar Mohammed Mullar issued what seemed like a statement of condemnation against civilian killing in 2009.

This statement was supposedly directed to members of Taliban to stop killing the innocent civilians. Unfortunately, series of fresh attacks experienced after the statement was an indication of pure incitement to further brutality. Actually, the “code of conduct” (Gutman 221) only worsened the situation as the group adopted more serious and brutal methods of handling their perceived enemy.

In 2001, the joint NATO forces were a relief to civilians who bore the brutality of atrocities directed at them by the Taliban group. Declared a terrorist outfit by the international community, the combined efforts by NATO completely disorganized Taliban militia group and in the process, changed the social, political, and social landscape of Afghanistan as cases of human rights abuse declined. Despite concrete evidences presented at the International Criminal Court by human rights activists, none of the cases has been concluded.

Works Cited

Gutman, Roy. How We Missed the Story: Osama Bin Laden, the Taliban, and the Hijacking of Afghanistan. New York: US Institute of Peace Press, 2008. Print.

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IvyPanda. (2018) 'The Taliban and Human Rights'. 8 November.

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