UN: Afghan civilian death toll up 15 percent

By the Associated Press | July 14, 2011 | 5:29 AM EDT

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The U.N. says the number of Afghan civilians killed in bombings and other attacks is up 15 percent from the same period last year.

The figures reflect concern that Afghan civilians are increasingly being caught up in violence in the conflict-ridden country.

In a midyear report released Thursday, the U.N. says 1,462 Afghan civilians lost their lives — many in the crossfire of battle between Taliban insurgents and Afghan, U.S. and NATO forces. During the first half of last year, 1,271 Afghan civilians were killed.

The number of civilians injured rose too — by 7 percent. In the first six months of the year, 2,144 civilians were injured compared with 1,997 during the same time last year.