Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] said [press release] Friday that a recent Taliban hotel attack that killed 15 civilians should serve as a reminder that the Afghan government should work with the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] to bring justice to those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity. The attack occurred on Thursday night at the Spozhmay Hotel outside of Kabul when Taliban fighters killed at least 20 people, 15 of whom were civilians, and held dozens more hostage for almost 12 hours. It ended in a shootout between Taliban fighters and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) [official website] and Afghan soldiers. AI Acting Asia and Pacific Program Director Catherine Baber said:
The Afghan government and its international partners must not lose sight of human rights as they pursue reconciliation with the Taleban. Any potential peace deal must not include impunity for war crimes and other grave human rights abuses committed by all parties to the conflict.AI said Thursday's attack was the most serious on civilians since the Taliban's attack last year on Afghanistan's Intercontinental Hotel, which killed 22 people.
Other countries have been taking action against Taliban members for their war crimes and crimes against humanity. In 2010, the US filed charges [JURIST report] against a Pakistani Taliban leader for an attack on its Central Intelligence Agency [official website] Afghan outpost that killed nine people. In 2008, Pakistan filed charges [JURIST report] against another Pakistani Taliban leader for involvement in the assassination of its former prime minister, Benzhair Bhutto. In 2006, the US brought charges against [JURIST report] a Guantanamo Bay detainee for working as a translator and money-man for Taliban and al Qaeda leaders in Afghanistan.