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Over 300,000 Afghans displaced by conflict so far this year: UN agency

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Displaced people from Jaghori and Malestan districts in Kabul, capital of Afghanistan on Nov. 17, 2018. More than 300,000 Afghans have been internally displaced by conflict so far this year, according to the UN. Xinhua

KABUL (Xinhua) – More than 300,000 Afghans have been internally displaced by conflict so far this year, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Afghanistan said Tuesday.

A total of 301,341 people have been verified as having been displaced by conflict this year, according to OCHA’s Displacement Tracking System (DTS), the agency said in a regular weekly report.

The report came as fighting rages across the country and the worsening security situation and ongoing insurgency forced people to leave their homes for safer places.

However, the agency noted that overall the number of people displaced so far is 37 percent less than the same period last year which was 481,448.

Afghan officials and humanitarian agencies have expressed concern over the increasing numbers of displaced families in the country since the displacement affected the life of Afghan women and children as they do not have access to health facilities and schooling.

Some 270,951 people affected by conflict and natural disasters, including drought, as well as returnees received humanitarian assistance within the past week, according to the report.

The agency also expressed concerns over increasing demands by non-state armed groups for illegal taxation from humanitarian agencies in different parts of the country.

“Such demands violate humanitarian principles and cause delays in responding to life-saving needs of the affected people.”

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