Dispatches

AAN obituary: Ludwig Adamec, the Afghanistan Encyclopedian (1924-2019)

Professor Ludwig W Adamec was the author of “The Who is Who of Afghanistan” – a book every student of Afghanistan will have encountered early in her or his career. Printed in 1975, and updated several times since then, it is nothing less than one of the standard works of Afghan studies. AAN’s Thomas Ruttig […]

The 2018 Election Observed (7) in Daikundi: The outstanding role of women

Like other provinces, the 2018 parliamentary election in Daikundi faced some technical, logistical and security challenges, but compared to other places these problems were limited. As a result, both the process and the outcome of the election have been largely uncontested. Women participation, both during voter registration and polling, was high: more women registered and […]

Afghanistan’s 2019 elections (1): The countdown to the presidential election has kicked off

Afghanistan has just concluded its candidate nomination period for the presidential election, which has been moved from the initial date, 20 April, to 20 July 2019. The election will now involve four votes at the same time: provincial elections, district council elections, parliamentary elections in Ghazni province, and the presidential poll. With this, the country […]

Khost Protection Force Accused of Fresh Killings: Six men shot dead in Zurmat

There has been a fresh attack on civilians by armed men whom the victims’ family and the Paktia provincial governor’s spokesman have said were from the Khost Protection Force, an irregular militia supported by the CIA. A survivor of the attack carried out in Surkai village in Zurmat district, in Paktia province, described to AAN […]

The Afghan Territorial Force: Learning from the lessons of the past?

A new local defence force is being mobilised in Afghanistan. The establishment of the Afghan National Army Territorial Force was announced by President Ashraf Ghani in April 2018. Careful consideration has gone into its design, with safeguards built in to try to avoid the pitfalls associated with previous locally-recruited forces, such as the Afghan Local […]

The Myth of ‘Afghan Black’ (2): The cultural history of hashish consumption in Afghanistan

Hashish or chars is a fairly common substance in Afghanistan. Its use, without ever attaining the levels of mass consumption that characterise other lightly-intoxicating substances in other war-torn countries, like the chewing of qat in Yemen or Somalia, for example, has remained relatively widespread. This does not mean that it is condoned by society: hashish-users, known as […]

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