Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Jelena Bjelica

The RTA building in Kabul (Photo Source: Report by DSWCI)

“No Microphone for the President”: Can Radio Television Afghanistan still become a public service broadcaster?

Jelena Bjelica

Turning government-run Radio Television Afghanistan (RTA) into a public service broadcaster, a symbol of a democratic state, has been on the agenda of both donors and the Afghan government since 2002. However, only small, cosmetic changes have so far been made. As a result, many argue that this goal is no longer realistic. The overstaffed, […]

Context and Culture Read more
Nangarhar, 2008: Waiting in line for drinking water: people returning from Jalozai and Naser Bagh camps in Pakistan have found it difficult to find clean water in some of the places they have settled. (Photo Credit: Pajhwok)

Afghanistan’s Returning Refugees: Why are so many still landless?

Jelena Bjelica

More than 5.8 million Afghans, about 20 per cent of Afghanistan’s population, are refugees who have returned home since the fall of the Taleban according to UNHCR figures. Many found their houses destroyed or occupied, or discovered that a new set of laws had scrapped their tenancy rights. The government plan for distributing land to […]

Migration Read more
Sample of E-Tazkera (Source: Pajhwok)

The Troubled History of the E-tazkera (Part 2): Technical stumbling blocks

Jelena Bjelica Martine van Bijlert

The introduction of electronic ID cards – or e-tazkera – in Afghanistan remains haunted by delays, obstacles and poor planning. Although CEO Dr Abdullah approved the e-tazkera pilot phase on 3 August 2015, the process has yet to begin. Since then, President Ghani has questioned the very feasibility of this oft-delayed project, while main donors […]

Rights and Freedoms Read more
Protest in eastern Nangarhar province in September 2015 for inclusion of words of Afghan and Islam in new electronic national identity cards. (Pajhwok/Zeerak Fahim)

The Troubled History of the E-tazkera (Part 1): Political upheaval

Jelena Bjelica Martine van Bijlert

There is a fairly broad consensus among Afghans and donors alike that the introduction of an electronic ID card – or e-tazkera – would be a good thing; it would provide accurate population data, standardised ID documents and the possibility of, in the case of elections, drawing up reliable voter lists. The project, however, has […]

Rights and Freedoms Read more
Samples of methamphetamine and other synthetic drugs, like ecstasy and MDMA, exhibited in the display cabinet of state-of-the-art CNPA forensics lab in Kabul, Afghanistan (Photo by Jelena Bjelica 2015)

Afghanistan Breaking Bad: Crystal meth, a new drug on the market

Jelena Bjelica

The first methamphetamine seizure in Afghanistan was recorded in 2008, a minor capture of four grams in Helmand province. Now, seven years later, some 17 kilograms of methamphetamine, popularly known as ‘crystal meth’, were seized in the first ten months of 2015, in 14 out of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces. The Ministry of Counter Narcotics warned […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more
Poppy field in Helmand. Photo: AAN Staff

“One Year’s Result is Not a Trend”: the 2015 opium cultivation decrease

Jelena Bjelica

The decline (by almost a fifth) in the area of land in Afghanistan planted with opium poppy in 2015 came as a surprise to many. Poppy cultivation in Afghanistan had been on the rise since 2010, when an opium poppy blight halved opium production and triggered a subsequent hike in opium prices. However, the decline […]

Economy, Development, Environment Read more

Homeless and Unwanted: How Kabul’s drug users are driven from place to place

Jelena Bjelica Qayoom Suroush

The 2015 summer campaign to push drug users out from under the bridge in Pol-e Sokhta and close the ‘addict town’ there has turned into a public spectacle with groups of drug addicts being herded around by the police. Complaints by the surrounding community had forced the police to act, resulting in the partial dispersal of […]

Rights and Freedoms Read more