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.

The May 2023 Doha meeting: How should the outside world deal with the Taleban?

Kate Clark

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres is due to host a two-day meeting on Afghanistan with foreign envoys, beginning tomorrow, 1 May 2023, in the capital of Qatar, Doha. The Taleban have not been invited. AAN understands from sources from invited countries that the idea for the meeting emerged from visits to Kabul in January by […]

International Engagement Read more

Hearts Turned Away from Music: Afghan musicians’ paths to exile

Fabrizio Foschini

A year and a half after the Taleban takeover, music has completely disappeared from Afghan streets, TV channels, radios, cars and wedding halls. It barely survives in more personal and subdued forms and volumes – inside a house with tightly closed windows or shutters, inside headphones on one’s smartphone. The world, and Afghanistan more so, […]

Rights and Freedoms Read more

Eid al-Fitr Mubarak from AAN to All Our Readers

AAN Team

In the Islamic tradition, Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan and is celebrated during the first three days of Shawwal, the 10th month of the Islamic lunar calendar. For the entire month leading up to the sighting of the new moon and the end of Ramadan, Muslims have been fasting […]

Context and Culture Read more

Bans on Women Working, Then and Now: The dilemmas of delivering humanitarian aid during the first and second Islamic Emirates

Kate Clark

Anyone who lived in Afghanistan during the first Islamic Emirate will find the current stand-off between the Taleban and NGOs – and now the United Nations – over the issue of women working familiar. There is the same clashing of principles: the Emirate’s position that women must largely be kept inside the home to avoid […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

Back to the Village: Afghan city dwellers go home for a long-over-due visit

Sabawoon Samim

After the Taleban seized control of Afghanistan in August 2021, the lives of millions of Afghans changed overnight. While these events have had a negative impact on the lives of many, some have seen positive changes. The end of the conflict meant that many urban dwellers who had been born in rural areas and had […]

Context and Culture Read more
Nawruz

Simple Pleasures Amidst Great Frustrations: An essentially outlawed Nawruz in Taleban-ruled Afghanistan

S Reza Kazemi Sayed Asadullah Sadat

The second Nawruz, the first day of the spring and the new solar hejri year, after the Taleban’s return to power comes in an overwhelmingly frustrating atmosphere and appears even more lacklustre than the previous one. The Taleban have effectively banned it as a holiday and public celebration. A host of other crippling challenges such as severe […]

Context and Culture Read more

Two Security Council Resolutions and a Humanitarian Appeal: UN grapples with its role in Afghanistan

Jelena Bjelica Roxanna Shapour

Recent complex negotiations surrounding UNAMA’s mandate in Taleban-run Afghanistan have shone a light on longstanding divisions among UN Security Council members concerning key issues, such as human rights, women’s rights, peace and security and governance. This year, on 16 March 2023, member states agreed to resolve their differences by passing two Afghanistan-related resolutions; one that […]

International Engagement Read more

What Do The Taleban Spend Afghanistan’s Money On? Government expenditure under the Islamic Emirate

Kate Clark Roxanna Shapour

When the Taleban captured power in 2021, they moved swiftly to take over domestic revenue collection, adopting Ministry of Finance systems for taxes and customs. As insurgents, they had been diligent tax collectors and brought a wealth of experience in collecting money from people, but little in spending it – outside the war effort. Since […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

A Worsening “Human Rights Crisis”: New hard-hitting report from UN Special Rapporteur

Kate Clark

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, Richard Bennett, has said the Islamic Emirate is increasingly flouting “fundamental freedoms, including the rights of peaceful assembly and association, expression and the rights to life and protection against ill-treatment” and is “ruling Afghanistan through fear and repressive policies.” He also said […]

Rights and Freedoms Read more

The Daily Hustle: How to survive a winter in Kabul

Roxanna Shapour

Winters in Kabul are always difficult, and this year was no exception – with temperatures dropping well below zero and heavy snowfall. The snow turns the unpaved secondary roads where most Kabulis live into rivers of mud, making it difficult for people to get around. But if there’s little snow – increasingly the case because […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

The Politics of Survival in the Face of Exclusion: Hazara and Shia actors under the Taleban

Ali Yawar Adili

Since the Taleban’s return to power, an array of Hazara and Shia Muslim groups and individuals have tried to position themselves vis-à-vis the new order in an effort to protect a community that feels particularly vulnerable. The struggle over who gets to speak for the community has revived old intra-communal rivalries and factionalism, weakened their […]

Political Landscape Read more

New Lives in the City: How Taleban have experienced life in Kabul

Sabawoon Samim

A large number of Taleban fighters have moved to Afghanistan’s cities since the movement’s capture of power, many of them seeing life in the city for the first time in their lifetime. These fighters, many of whom are from villages, had lived modest lives, entirely focused on the war. Their circumstances have changed entirely since […]

Context and Culture Read more