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Afghanistan: The hidden human face of the war

* News Release Issued by the International Secretariat of Amnesty International *

20 December 2001 ASA 11/050/2001 226/01

As the world focuses on the new Interim Authority in Kabul and the hunt for Osama bin Laden, the human cost to Afghan civilians is going virtually unnoticed, Amnesty International delegates returned from a mission to Afghan refugees camps on the Afghan - Pakistani boarder, said today.

Delegates spoke with refugees in Jalozai and Chaman refugee camps and found that many had left their homes because a member of their family had been killed in the bombing. Eyewitnesses described seeing bodies of civilians buried in the rubble of houses or killed while riding in civilian vehicles. "The US and UK should make all information available on targets of the bombing and estimates of civilian casualties," Amnesty International said today.

Amnesty International's mission delegates, Margaret Ladner and Kamal Samari, are available for interview. Video footage of testimonies from victims of the bombing is available for broadcast.

Please call Amnesty International's press office in London on +44 (207) 413 5566 or mobile phone +44 (0)7778 472 126.


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