Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Rights and Freedoms

This thematic category comprises of AAN’s reporting on human rights, including women’s rights, media freedom, rule of law, governance and democratisation.

The Ban on Older Girls’ Education: Taleban conservatives ascendant and a leadership in disarray

Ashley Jackson

The Taleban’s abrupt decision to keep girls’ secondary schools closed, despite promising for months that they would re-open, has caused distress to girls, parents and teachers alike. The Taleban’s justification was confused, with various officials giving different reasons for the closure, from lack of teachers to inappropriate school uniforms. Eventually, a formal announcement cited the need […]

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Regime Change, Economic Decline and No Legal Protection: What has happened to the Afghan media?

Ehsan Qaane

The Taleban takeover of Afghanistan delivered a devastating blow to one of the Republic’s few achievements – freedom of expression and a vibrant media sector. Since the fall of the Republic, nearly half of Afghanistan’s media outlets have closed and thousands of Afghan journalists and media workers have either left the country, lost their jobs, […]

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War Crimes Trial Begins in the Netherlands: Former commander at Pul-e Charkhi faces justice

Kate Clark

The trial of an Afghan man suspected of committing war crimes in Afghanistan in the 1980s will start today in the Netherlands. Abdul Razaq Arif is believed to have served in leadership positions in the Pul-e Charkhi prison from 1983 to 1990 and is being charged with being an accessory to or allowing inhuman treatment and […]

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Who Gets to Go to School? (3): Are Taleban attitudes starting to change from within?

Sabawoon Samim

In the last of our three reports on the Taleban and education, especially of girls, we turn to what seems to be a relatively new trend. Guest author Sabawoon Samim* has been looking at views of girls’ education within the Taleban movement and finds it notable that some Taleban are now seeking out school and […]

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Who gets to go to school? (2) The Taleban and education through time

S Reza Kazemi Kate Clark

In trying to understand Taleban policy on state education, especially for girls, our first report heard from people around the country. They painted a picture of primary schools for boys and girls, and boys’ secondary schools having generally re-opened after the Taleban captured power on 15 August, but of girls’ secondary schools opening only very patchily. […]

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Who Gets to Go to School? (1): What people told us about education since the Taleban took over

Kate Clark AAN Team

Taleban policy towards women and girls is one of the prisms through which the movement has been studied – and judged – ever since the Taleban first came to power in the mid-nineties. A touchstone for many Afghans and outside observers was whether, after capturing power nationally in August 2021, they would allow girls to […]

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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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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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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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school girls

UN Human Rights Council to talk about Afghanistan: Why so little appetite for action?

Rachel Reid Ehsan Qaane

The United Nation’s Human Rights Council is holding a Special Session on Tuesday (24 August) to discuss the human rights situation in Afghanistan – both past and present. The resolution they will be considering has been drafted by Pakistan, the Taleban’s main international backer. Pakistan is currently the human rights coordinator of the Organisation of […]

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Rural Women’s Access to Health: Poverty, insecurity and traditions are the main obstacles

Jelena Bjelica AAN Team

What do good health services look like for rural women in Afghanistan? How easy or difficult is it for them to access the basic health services that do exist in their area? Does insecurity have a different impact on access to health services for women and men? To answer these questions, we interviewed nineteen Afghan women from different rural districts of the country. As […]

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