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.

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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How to Investigate War Crimes? Kabul tells the ICC it is dealing with them, while the AIHRC pleads for help from the UN

Ehsan Qaane

The saga of the stalled International Criminal Court (ICC) investigation into war crimes allegedly committed as part of the Afghan war continues. Following a high-level meeting in The Hague last month, the Afghan government is still dancing around the issue, as it reacts to competing pressure from the ICC, the United States (which does not […]

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American politics grounded in fear, ignorance and fantasy: New special report on Afghans in Guantanamo, as US prepares to withdraw troops

Kate Clark

President Joe Biden has announced that American troops will leave Afghanistan before 11 September 2021, a day that will mark twenty years since al-Qaeda attacked the United States and drew US forces to Afghanistan. Another anniversary is also looming: it will soon be twenty years since President George Bush opened the Guantanamo Bay detention camp […]

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Afghanistan 1400: The dawn and decline of a political movement

Rachel Reid

Ten years ago, a group of bright young Afghan professionals formed Harakat-e-Afghanistan 1400 (Afghanistan 1400 Movement), aiming to break the mould of Afghan politics. With the new century of the Afghan calendar year 1400 (2021) as their horizon, they wanted to establish a political entity that – unlike existing Afghan political parties – was not based […]

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Police and NDS Torture: One in three security detainees tortured, despite long-term downward trend

Kate Clark

UNAMA and the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) have released their latest report on the treatment of conflict-related detainees in Afghanistan. They found only the slightest reduction in the reporting of torture and ill-treatment since 2017-18, with torture still being used against 30 per cent – or one in […]

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The Intra-Afghan Peace Talks: Warring parties negotiate, victims of war are excluded

Ehsan Qaane

A clear divide has emerged in the Afghan government on the role of war victims in the peace process. In a surprising move, President Ashraf Ghani recently suggested that Afghanistan should follow the Spanish model – better known as the ‘pact of forgetting’. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Peace and members of the Afghan negotiating team […]

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Is the Citizens’ Charter the Right Vehicle for Reconciliation? The risks of monetising peace

Jelena Bjelica

The Citizens’ Charter is a community-driven development programme, currently implemented in one third of Afghanistan, which is seen as key means of reducing poverty. However, there are pilots planned that will stretch this ambitious programme beyond its economic goals, to use it as a vehicle for peace. AAN’s Jelena Bjelica looks at the mixed achievements of […]

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A Request to Delay: Another Afghan government attempt to prevent an ICC war crimes investigation?

Ehsan Qaane

The Afghan government has submitted a request to the ICC Office of the Prosecutor to defer the ICC’s investigations in Afghanistan, on the grounds that domestic investigations are taking place into alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity that occurred on Afghan soil. They argue this means there is no need for the ICC investigation. […]

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Photographs of some of the 5,000 victims forcibly disappeared by the PDPA government placed close to Pul-e Charkhi prison in Kabul where many mass graves have been discovered. Information about these victims has emerged as a result of Dutch investigations into war crimes and has brought solace to family members. Photo: Maina Abbasi/ December 2016

Afghan War Crimes Trials in The Netherlands: Who are the suspects and what have been the outcomes?

Ehsan Qaane

At least six Afghan, or Afghan-Dutch, citizens have been investigated for war crimes and torture in Afghanistan by the Dutch authorities. Two were found guilty and received prison sentences, one was acquitted, one died during the investigation, one was investigated but released due to insufficient evidence, and the sixth is still under investigation. All were […]

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Child Rights Protection Law in Afghanistan: Can the parliamentary chaos be resolved?

Rohullah Sorush

Afghanistan’s lower house of parliament, the Wolesi Jirga, has been failing to reach a consensus on a law that would protect children’s rights for almost four years. The legislation is aimed at ensuring children’s rights are implemented in government ministries and bodies in a wide range of areas, from protecting children from abuse and malnutrition to […]

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War Crimes Investigation in Afghanistan by the ICC: It’s happening. What will it mean?

Ehsan Qaane Kate Clark

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has authorised an investigation into war crimes and crimes against humanity occurring in Afghanistan since 2003, by the Taleban, and United States and Afghan government forces. The investigation will also cover crimes related to the Afghan conflict that took place on the territory of other ICC member states, thereby bringing […]

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Freed at Last: Three Afghans sent to Guantanamo in 2002 and 2003 are finally home

Kate Clark

Three Afghans, who were detained and rendered to the US detention camp in Guantanamo Bay in 2002 and 2003, and then transferred to the United Arab Emirates 2016 and what turned out to be further incarceration, have been released. Obaidullah and Mohammed Karim from Khost and Hamidullah from Kabul have also been allowed to return […]

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