A steep rise in civilian casualties in Somalia, due largely to attacks by the Al-Shabaab armed group, has exacerbated already grim human rights and humanitarian situation for the people of Somalia, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk said Monday.
According to the latest UN figures, at least 613 civilians have been killed and 948 injured so far this year – the highest number since 2017 and more than a 30 percent rise from last year. Most of the casualties, 315 killed and 686 injured, have been due to Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), at least 94 percent of which were attributed to Al-Shabaab. Other casualties have been caused by State security forces, clan militia and other unidentified actors.
“This year has brought an abrupt halt to a general decline in deaths and injuries documented since 2017,” said Türk. “I am deeply concerned that more Somalis continue to lose their lives on a daily basis.”
“All parties to the conflict must uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law and ensure that civilians are protected. This also includes armed elements engaged alongside the Government in the conflict against Al-Shabaab, as well as international forces.”