Afghanistan This Week

A summary of the week’s news, views and stories from across and on Afghanistan

13 to 19 Feb 2023

Opinion: Women and girls in Afghanistan need more than just reversal of Taliban bans

“Even if the Taliban decides to lift the bans on women’s education and work, it will make life difficult for them in any environment through other oppressive means,” writes Kazim Ehsan.

Afghanistan has lost over 130 radio stations under the Taliban

World Radio Day: Afghanistan has lost over 130 radio stations under the Taliban

Marking World Radio Day, Nai, an Afghan media watchdog, has said that more than 130 radio stations have ceased to operate since the Taliban’s return to power in August 2021.

Taliban prevents families in Paryan return to their homes

Taliban prevents families it displaced return to their homes in Panjshir

Local sources in Panjshir province told KabulNow that the Taliban is preventing families who were forcibly displaced months ago by the group to return to their homes. 

Villagers free snow leopard

Rare snow leopard freed into the wild by villagers in Wakhan Corridor

Locals in the remote Wakhan district of Badakhshan province said they released a rare snow leopard back into the wild after it attacked a villager’s livestock and killed eight sheep and goats.

Taliban seals shops in Helmand

Taliban seals 70 shops Helmand after owners fail to attend Friday prayers

Sources in the city of Lashkargah told KabulNow that the Taliban Vice and Virtue police agents sealed 70 shops, accusing the owners of not attending Friday prayers. The shopkeepers were each issued with a 10,000 AFN ($111).

ISKP has grown to 6500 members in Afghanistan

Russian General: ISKP has grown to 6,500 members in Afghanistan

Russian General and the Chief of the Joint Staff of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO), Colonel General Anatoly Sidorov, said the ISKP had grown to 6,500 members in Afghanistan.

Sirajuddin Haqqani

Senior Taliban leaders publicly question their chief as internal rift mounts

Sirajuddin Haqqani and other senior Taliban figures publicly questioned the authority of the group’s supreme leader, Hibatullah Akhundzada. Haqqani warned against “monopolisation of power” and “imposing views on others.”

Taliban: Valentine’s Day ‘promotes prostitution and is against Quranic principles’

In a TV broadcast on 14 February, the Taliban declared that celebrating Valentine’s Day was a “cultural invasion” and “against Quranic principles.”

Taliban congratulates Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan

Taliban celebrates 34th anniversary of Soviet withdrawal amid heightened internal rifts

The Taliban celebrated the 34th withdrawal of Soviet forces from Afghanistan in 1989 with speeches from its senior leaders, including the defence minister and the son of Mullah Omar.

Russian Envoy suggests a regional “G5” on Afghanistan

The Russian Presidential Envoy to Afghanistan, Zamir Kabulov, has suggested the formation of a regional “G5” to address the current issues in Afghanistan. 

Ned Price: US will take actions against al-Qaida in Afghanistan

US: The Taliban is unwilling to take action against al-Qaida in Afghanistan

The State Department spokesperson, Ned Price, said the US would act “decisively” to disrupt threats emanating from Afghanistan. “We are prepared, willing, and able to take action ourselves if the Taliban is unable or unwilling to fulfil the commitments that it has made.”

Taliban spokesman

Taliban: Differences of opinion among leaders won’t lead to bloodshed

In a video message on Thursday, the Taliban spokesperson, Zabihullah Majahid, dismissed internal rifts among the Taliban leadership, which have recently been reflected in some public speeches, including that of Sirajuddin Haqqani.

China and Iran call on the Taliban to lift women restrictions and form inclusive government

In a joint statement on Thursday, following their meeting in Beijing, the Chinese President, Xi Jinping, and his Iranian counterpart, Ebrahim Raisi, have called on the Taliban to end restrictions on women’s work and education.

Taliban: Former female MP was killed by one her bodyguards

The Taliban spokesperson for Kabul Police, Khalid Zadran, said on Friday that the former female lawmaker Mursal Nabizada was murdered by one of her bodyguards.

US top diplomat for Afghanistan

US top diplomat for Afghanistan apologises for ‘inappropriate’ tweets

The Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. Mission to Afghanistan, Karen Decker, apologised on Thursday for tweets that were deemed inappropriate and insensitive to the plight of Afghan women.

With school gates shut, many Afghan girls are turning to madrasas for education

With school gates being closed by the Taliban, some parents have found an alternative avenue of education for their daughters: madrasas. According to Reuters, madrasas across Afghanistan have haven a sharp increase in enrolments, some up to %40.

Brothers convicted for killing sister in Germany

Afghan brothers jailed for life for killing sister in Germany

A German court on Thursday convicted two Afghan brothers of killing their sister and sentenced them to life imprisonment. The victim, a mother of two, identified by the court as Maryam H, was killed by her brothers, Yousuf and Mahdi, in Germany’s southern Bavaria region, and was found buried on a hill in 2021.

Human Rights Watch calls for the immediate release of Afghan journalist

Fereshta Abbasi, Afghanistan Researcher at HRW, said “The Taliban need to stop the arbitrary detention of journalists in Afghanistan and release Mohammadyar Majrooh immediately.”

Presidents Bush and Obama

Bush advised Obama Afghanistan should become ‘moderate’ and ‘democratic’

In a series of foreign policy advice memos in January 2009, revealed in a newly released book, the outgoing US President George W. Bush told Obama of the US’s goal for Afghanistan to become a “democratic” country with a “thriving private sector economy.”

Bodies of 18 Afghans found in Bulgaria

Bodies of 18 Afghans found in an abandoned truck in Bulgaria

Police in Bulgaria found the bodies of 18 Afghan refugees, including of a child, inside a truck abandoned along a highway near Sofia on Friday. The truck, the Bulgarian Interior Ministry said, was carrying about 40 people inside secret compartments below a load of timber.

UN: $479 million needed to provide safe water to 14 million in Afghanistan

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has stated that $479 million is required to enhance access to safe water and prevent disease for 14 million people in Afghanistan.

Taliban bans sale of contraceptives

Taliban bans the sale of “Western conspiracy” contraceptives

The Taliban has banned the sale of contraceptives in two major cities of Afghanistan, claiming that it is a “western conspiracy to control the Muslim population.”

Female foreign ministers at MSC condemn the Taliban’s oppression of women and girls

Female foreign ministers attending the Munich Security Conference have in a joint statement on Saturday condemned the Taliban’s oppression of women and girls in Afghanistan.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *