Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Reports

Reports – previously known as dispatches – are the flagship of the AAN website and our main type of publication. AAN reports are based on extensive desk and field research and provide timely and in-depth information and analysis.

One Afghan wins in court, while other Guantanamo detainees remain ensnared in a rigged system

Kate Clark

A landmark court ruling, which saw a Guantanamo detainee successfully argue that his detention was unlawful for the first time in more than a decade, has now been published. The judge said that the United States no longer had the legal authority to detain Asadullah Harun Gul because his faction, Hezb-e Islami, “is at peace.” […]

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Music Censorship in 2021: The silencing of a nation and its cultural identity

Fabrizio Foschini

Music and musicians once again face serious threats following Afghanistan’s takeover by the Taleban in August this year. Over the past two decades, the theory and practice of traditional Afghan instruments, as well as other musical forms, has seen a remarkable revival after the destruction of the country’s musical heritage during the 1990s, with skills […]

Context and Culture Read more

Killing the Goose that Laid the Golden Egg: Afghanistan’s economic distress post-15 August

Kate Clark

Even as the Taleban celebrated their unprecedented victory on 15 August 2021, Afghanistan was transformed. It was poorer, more isolated and extremely fragile, economically. Most aid stopped, sanctions came into effect against the Taleban government and foreign reserves were frozen. Economic disaster came on top of the worst drought in years and the ill-effects of […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

Global Warming and Afghanistan: Drought, hunger and thirst expected to worsen

mohammad assem mayar

While the nations of the world come together at the COP26 to seek solutions to climate change, Afghanistan is already suffering from global warming. One of the worst droughts in recent years has caused rainfed wheat crops to fail, led to plummeting livestock prices and shortages in drinking water. 19 million people – nearly half […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

What now for the Taleban and Narcotics? A case study on cannabis

Fazl Rahman Muzhary

It has been more than a year since the Taleban banned the cultivation of cannabis and the production and trafficking of cannabis resin, known as hashish, in areas of Afghanistan under their control. The Taleban put a great deal of effort into formulating the ban, consulting Islamic scholars and various of their commissions before issuing […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

Landmark Judgement: US court finds detention of an Afghan in Guantanamo unlawful

Kate Clark

A United States court has ruled that the detention of Afghan Asadullah Harun Gul in Guantanamo is unlawful, the first time in ten years that anyone at Guantanamo has won such a petition. The ruling comes just days after the government cleared him for transfer out of the detention camp – as AAN’s Kate Clark […]

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Sehar Bibi and Ibrahim with photos of their son, Harun Gul, in their home in Shamshatu refugee camp Pakistan.

One of the two last Afghans in Guantanamo authorised for release, but when?

Kate Clark

The United States authorities have cleared the transfer of the Afghan national, Asadullah Harun Gul, out of Guantanamo after detaining him without trial for 14 years. It accused Harun of being a Hezb-e Islami commander who conducted attacks on coalition forces and liaised with al-Qaida but has never given him any meaningful opportunity to answer […]

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The Khalid Payenda Interview (2): Reforms, regrets and the final bid to save a collapsing Republic

Kate Clark Roxanna Shapour

In this second part of this interview, former Minister of Finance Khalid Payenda talks to AAN’s Kate Clark and Roxanna Shapour about the reaction of the Republic’s leadership to his plans to get the economy back on track and fight corruption and whether it was already too late to effect meaningful change. He gives a […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

The Taleban’s Caretaker Cabinet and other Senior Appointments

Martine van Bijlert

After three rounds of senior appointments — on 7 September, 21 September and 4 October – most key posts appear to have been filled, at least in Kabul. These appointments have solved the immediate question of who will head the state institutions that will help restart the government. However, given the uncertainties about how the […]

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Creating a Hierarchy of Victims? ICC may drop investigations into US forces to focus on Taleban and ISKP

Kate Clark

The International Criminal Court’s Chief Prosecutor, Karim A A Khan, has asked the judges of the ICC’s Pre-Trial Chamber to authorise a resumption of investigations into alleged “atrocity crimes” committed in the context of the Afghan conflict, but only those ascribed to the Taleban and Islamic State in Khorasan Province (ISKP). As for crimes perpetrated […]

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The Khalid Payenda Interview (1): An insider’s view of politicking, graft and the fall of the Republic

Kate Clark Roxanna Shapour

What was it like to be a reformer at the heart of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan? The Republic’s last finance minister, Khalid Payenda, has given AAN an insider’s perspective. It is a sobering account of the obstacles that prevented him and other reformers ending government corruption and holding wrongdoers to account. Payenda discussed with […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

The Focus of the Taleban’s New Government: Internal cohesion, external dominance

Martine van Bijlert

As the twentieth anniversary of al-Qaeda’s 9/11 attacks that brought the US to Afghanistan to topple the Taleban’s emirate came round, it was the Taleban who were back in power. This week, they announced their new interim administration. It is all-male, almost all-Pashtun, almost all clerical and all-Taleban. Set alongside their sustained military campaign in […]

War and Peace Read more