[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] said Monday that insurgents in Afghanistan [JURIST news archive] are committing an increasing number of war crimes [report text; press release] by launching attacks targeting civilians. In a 116-page report entitled "The Human Cost: The Consequences of Insurgent Attacks in Afghanistan", HRW found that in 2006 669 civilians died as a result of attacks by the Taliban, Hezb-e Islami [GlobalSecurity backgrounder] and other insurgent forces, making it "the deadliest year for civilians in Afghanistan" since Taliban rule ended in 2001. HRW relied on records from both the media and NGOs in compiling its report. AP has more.
In March, the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) [advocacy website] urged the US and Afghan governments [JURIST report] to establish a better legal framework to guide US military actions in the fight against the Taliban, criticizing US forces for civilian deaths in Afghanistan. The AIHRC's comments came after HRW criticized US forces [HRW report] for the deaths of over 20 civilians in recent months.