Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Kate Clark

Before Ashura: Extra security measures in place for second year running

Kate Clark

This year, the ten-day commemoration of Muharram by Afghanistan’s Shia Muslims follows a wave of bloody attacks directed against them, most claimed by the Islamic State of Khorasan Province (ISKP). In 2017, the government armed and paid guards at some mosques and other religious buildings in an attempt to thwart attacks. Those guards have stayed […]

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Ferocious Attack on ICC: Washington threatens court if it investigates alleged US war crimes in Afghanistan

Kate Clark

President Trump’s National Security Advisor, John Bolton, has made a withering attack on the International Criminal Court (ICC), threatening prosecutions against personnel and retaliation against any country cooperating with the Court if it ‘goes after’ America. Bolton’s intervention comes as the judges of the ICC’s Pre-Trial Chamber weigh up whether or not to authorise a […]

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Enemy Number One: How the Taleban deal with the ALP and uprising groups

Borhan Osman Kate Clark

It is one of the few ‘truths’ of the Afghan insurgency that the Taleban hate arbaki– their term for locally-recruited defence forces, primarily the Afghan Local Police and uprising groups.These forces have always been a mixed bag, with some abusing the local population or captured by ethnic, factional or criminal interests. However, especially where they […]

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UNAMA Mid-Year Report on Civilian Casualties: Highest number of deaths on record

Kate Clark

UNAMA has released its mid-year assessment of the harm done to civilians in the Afghan conflict. It found that more civilians were killed in the first six months of 2018 than in any year since 2009 when UNAMA started systematic monitoring. This was despite the Eid ul-Fitr ceasefire, which all parties to the conflict apart […]

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Graft and Remilitarisation: A look back at efforts to disarm, demobilise, reconcile and reintegrate

Kate Clark

Even before the Eid truce suddenly made a peace process in Afghanistan imaginable, international civilian and military circles were wondering what they could do to support one. The government, the High Peace Council (HPC) and donors are also currently negotiating future funding for the HPC. It seems a good moment, says AAN’s Kate Clark, to […]

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Interior Minister Wais Barmak stops on the road into Kabul to meet Taleban who have come into the capital during the Eid truce (Photo: taken by someone in the crowd and posted on social media)

The Eid Ceasefire: Allowing Afghans to imagine their country at peace

Kate Clark

Ceasefires by the government, the Taleban and the United States over the Muslim holiday of Eid ul-Fitr has partially ended with the Taleban ordering their fighters back to “normal operations.” However, the three-day truce resulted in an unprecedented peaceful movement of fighters and soldiers into territories controlled by the other. The media was full of […]

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How to End the Afghan War? A new publication on peace reviewed

Kate Clark

A new short book-length report, “Incremental peace in Afghanistan” looks at what is needed to end the Afghan conflict. It explores the many drivers towards the war continuing – external backing for both sides, the war economy and basic persisting disputes about power-sharing – but also details what could drive a peace process – the […]

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Uprising, ALP and Taleban in Andar: The arc of government failure  

Fazl Rahman Muzhary Kate Clark

The Taleban look to be preparing for a new onslaught on Andar district centre. The name ‘Andar’ is still full of political resonance, gained in the summer of 2012 when the Taleban were suddenly and swiftly pushed out of a large part of the district. That counter-insurgency in an insurgent stronghold was styled the ‘Andar […]

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Two New Reports on Afghan Civilian Casualties: Gruelling, but important reading

Kate Clark

UNAMA and Human Rights Watch have each released blistering reports on the killing and wounding of civilians in the Afghan conflict. UNAMA presents the results of its investigation into the Afghan Air Force’s bombing of an open-air graduation ceremony at a madrassa in Dasht-e Archi in Kunduz province in April. It concludes that, even if […]

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A day after the PDPA took power, soldiers guard the Arg where Nur Muhammad Taraki is the new president (1978). Photo: Cleric77, Wikipedia - Creative Commons 3.0

An April Day that Changed Afghanistan 2: Afghans remember the ‘Saur Revolution’

Kate Clark

It is forty years, today, since the coup d’etat which brought the leftist People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA) to power. That event has had far-reaching consequences, plunging the country into a conflict from which it has yet to emerge and changing the course of almost every Afghan’s life. AAN has been speaking to a […]

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An ICC Delay: Court postpones decision on whether to investigate war crimes in Afghanistan

Kate Clark

The International Criminal Court has announced a delay in deciding whether or not to authorise an investigation into war crimes and crimes against humanity by American and Afghan government forces and Taleban and other insurgent groups in Afghanistan. A decision had been expected during the last month, but a routine changeover of the Court’s judges […]

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Coming Home to Kabul: A Mughal art exhibition opens in the cradle of King Babur’s Empire

Jelena Bjelica Kate Clark

The display of 72 paintings from the mid-sixteenth century Mughal period in Kabul as well as late sixteenth and seventeenth century Indian Mughal paintings opened in the Queen’s Pavilion of Babur’s Garden in Kabul on 31 March 2018. This, as well as an earlier exhibition in Herat’s Citadel in December 2017 showcasing fifteenth century Tîmûrid […]

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