Afghanistan - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Afghanistan


Student bus targeted amid deadly wave of Kabul bombings

Jun 02, 2019 - 11:16 PM

Authorities say two bombs planted by the side of the road went off just as people rushed to help victims in the aftermath of the first bombing

Taliban leader says no ceasefire as U.S. envoy heads to region

Jun 02, 2019 - 12:08 AM

The Taliban's fight 'and resistance against the occupation is nearing the stage of success, Allah willing,' says Taliban chief Haibatullah Akhundzada

NO CEASEFIRE. This AFPTV screen grab from a video made on May 28, 2019 in Moscow shows Taliban Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar during a conference marking a century of diplomatic relations between Afghanistan and Russia, followed by discussions with Afghan politicians about the future of the country. Photo by Nikolay Korzhov/AFPTV/AFP

Taliban leader says no ceasefire anytime soon

Jun 01, 2019 - 4:43 PM

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani had proposed a nationwide ceasefire at the start of Ramadan early last month, but the Taliban rejected the offer

CAUGHT IN BETWEEN.Internally displaced Afghan men talk in Kandahar City, after fleeing conflict with the Taliban in the Deh Rawood district of Uruzgan province. Photo by Javed Tanveer/AFP

4 Afghans killed, 4 U.S. troops wounded in Kabul suicide blast

May 31, 2019 - 4:28 PM

The blast, claimed by the Taliban, occurs around 8:40 am (0410 GMT) when an explosives-laden vehicle drives into the convoy travelling in eastern Kabul, according to interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi

2 Afghan youths get 30 years jail for killing of young girl

May 26, 2019 - 7:18 PM

Six-year-old Mahsa Ahmadi was snatched off a Kabul street in March 2019 and was killed after her parents were unable to pay a ransom of $300,000

Afghans fear end of golden age of press freedom

May 21, 2019 - 1:22 PM

Even as hundreds of media outlets proliferate across Afghanistan, consumers and journalists alike worry a potential peace deal between the Taliban and the US could sound the death knell for a golden age of press freedom

AFGHANISTAN'S PRESS FREEDOM. In this photo taken on April 4, 2019 an Afghan presenter takes part in a live broadcast at the Khurshid TV station in Kabul. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Female Afghan former journalist shot dead in Kabul

May 12, 2019 - 12:35 PM

Mena Mangal, a former journalist who became a cultural advisor to Afghanistan's parliament, is gunned down in broad daylight

Taliban overruns international NGO office in Kabul attack

May 08, 2019 - 5:10 PM

The attack comes as the US and Taliban representatives continue negotiations in Qatar aimed at bringing an end to the nearly 18-year-old conflict, while fighting continues to rage across Afghanistan

Afghanistan loya jirga demands 'immediate and permanent' ceasefire

May 03, 2019 - 8:43 PM

(UPDATED) Delegates of a historic 'loya jirga' peace summit say the ceasefire should start at the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, which gets underway in the coming days

Kabul on lockdown as assembly discusses peace with the Taliban

Apr 30, 2019 - 7:01 PM

The loya jirga is being held as the US and Taliban are discussing a possible foreign troop withdrawal from Afghanistan in exchange for a permanent ceasefire and various Taliban pledges

LOYA JIRGA. In this file photo taken on April 29, 2019, Afghan people attend the first day of the 'loya jirga' (grand assembly) in Kabul. File photo by STR/AFP

Months after fraud-tainted poll, Afghan lawmakers sworn in

Apr 26, 2019 - 11:59 PM

Even now, results for 33 seats in central Kabul province have not been announced amid allegations of rigging, irregularities, and technical difficulties

NEW PARLIAMENT. In this file photo, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani talks at the second Kabul Process conference at the Presidential Palace in Kabul on February 28, 2018. File photo by Shah Marai/AFP

More civilians now killed by U.S., Afghan forces than by insurgents – U.N.

Apr 24, 2019 - 4:25 PM

(UPDATED) A UN report says during the first 3 months of 2019, international and pro-government forces were responsible for the deaths of 305 civilians, whereas insurgent groups killed 227 people

TADAMICHI YAMAMOTO. United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Afghanistan Tadamichi Yamamoto attends a press conference closing a two-day United Nations Conference on Afghanistan in Geneva on November 28, 2018. File photo by Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

Afghan supreme court extends Ghani's term until delayed elections

Apr 21, 2019 - 7:53 PM

Presidential elections are initially slated for April 20 but Afghan election officials were unprepared for a new nationwide poll so soon after October parliamentary elections

Suicide bombers attack Afghan ministry in downtown Kabul

Apr 20, 2019 - 10:53 PM

The presidential palace says in a statement, 'The enemies of Afghanistan have conducted a terrorist attack'

ATTACKED. Afghan security personnel stand guard near the Afghan communication ministry as an attack between Afghan forces and attackers is still going on in central Kabul on April 20, 2019. Photo by AFP

Pakistan says gunmen behind killing of 14 based in Iran

Apr 20, 2019 - 7:27 PM

Pakistan hopes Iran 'will take a swift action against the Baloch terrorist outfits,' says Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi

RESPONSE. In this file photo, Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi addresses a press conference in Multan on April 7, 2019. Photo by SS Mirza/AFP

ICC judges turn down request for Afghanistan war crimes probe

Apr 12, 2019 - 8:18 PM

'The judges decided that an investigation into the situation in Afghanistan at this stage would not serve the interests of justice,' the International Criminal Court says in a statement

THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT. A picture taken on November 23, 2015 shows the new building of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, The Netherlands. File photo by Martijn Beekman/ANP/AFP

EU backs ICC after U.S. revokes prosecutor's visa

Apr 06, 2019 - 10:39 PM

The revocation of Fatou Bensouda's visa comes after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced restrictions on ICC staff who probe US or allied personnel

ICC PROSECUTOR. Public Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda enters the court room for the trial of Dominic Ongwen a senior commander in Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army, at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, on December 6, 2016. File photo by Peter Dejong/AFP

'We have lost everything': Afghans describe deadly floods

Mar 31, 2019 - 11:50 PM

Flash floods in Afghanistan kill at least 35 people, wash away houses, destroy temporary shelters, and cut off access to remote villages

Afghan military could pose threat to country if aid ends – U.S. report

Mar 29, 2019 - 10:34 AM

'Without financial support, the government of Afghanistan cannot survive,' says a report by the Office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction

Afghan security personnel stand guard near the site of an attack near the Marshal Fahim Military Academy base in Kabul on January 29, 2018. Gunmen launched a pre-dawn attack on a military academy in Kabul on January 29, security officials and sources told AFP, in an ongoing assault that marks the latest violence to strike the Afghan capital. / AFP PHOTO / WAKIL KOHSAR

Afghanistan presidential election delayed to September 28

Mar 20, 2019 - 10:53 PM

The Independent Election Commission says the vote has faced 'numerous problems and challenges...therefore holding the elections based on the timelines previously announced is not possible'

DELAY. The Independent Election Commission (IEC) announces that the Afghanistan presidential election will be delayed until September 28. Image from IEC's Twitter account

Taliban deny discussing ceasefire, Afghan dialogue with U.S.

Mar 08, 2019 - 8:30 PM

The Taliban have repeatedly refused to meet with the Afghan government, whom they dismiss as 'puppets'

TALKS. This file photo shows participants attending the opening of the two-day talks of the Taliban and Afghan opposition representatives at the President Hotel in Moscow on February 5, 2019. File photo by Yuri Kadobnov/AFP

Mortar attack on major political gathering in Kabul kills 3

Mar 07, 2019 - 8:35 PM

The attack claimed by the Islamic State group represents a major security breach and marks a resumption of violence in the capital after weeks of calm

AFTERMATH. The Afghan relatives of a blast victim fight with a hospital security guard (C) who was restricting access of people trying to get inside Isteqlal Hospital following explosions that struck a large ceremony in Kabul on March 7, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

At least 16 killed in attack in eastern Afghanistan – provincial spokesman

Mar 06, 2019 - 3:27 PM

(UPDATED) A clearance operation is ongoing, with security defusing two suicide vests, one car bomb, and multiple mines planted by the attackers

Taliban attacks U.S.-Afghan base in Helmand – officials

Mar 01, 2019 - 4:20 PM

The Taliban launch the pre-dawn assault on Shorab military base in Helmand province, engaging in heavy firefights with Afghan forces

SHORAB CAMP. In this photograph taken on August 28, 2017, a US Marine looks on as Afghan National Army soldiers raise the Afghan National flag on an armed vehicle during a training exercise to deal with IEDs (improvised explosive devices) at the Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S., Taliban pause negotiations in Doha following 'solid' talks

Feb 28, 2019 - 6:47 PM

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid confirms the pause, adding the insurgents are 'committed to the current peace process along with peace'

PAUSE. In this file photo taken on February 08, 2019, US Special Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad participates in a discussion on 'The Prospects for Peace in Afghanistan' at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, DC. File photo by Jim Watson/AFP

Civilian deaths in Afghan war hit record in 2018

Feb 24, 2019 - 10:35 PM

There were 3,804 people killed and another 7,189 wounded in Afghanistan in 2018, says the United Nations

AFTERMATH. Afghan volunteers carry a body at the scene of a car bomb that exploded in front of the old Ministry of Interior Affairs in Kabul on January 27, 2018. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

The Taliban have not changed, warn Afghans living under their rule

Feb 22, 2019 - 1:52 PM

As momentum for peace talks builds, testimonies from Afghans paint a picture of what life might be like should the militants return to power if the US exits its longest war

DISPLACED. In this photo taken on February 9, 2019, internally displaced Afghan men talk in Kandahar city, after fleeing conflict with the Taliban in the Deh Rawood district of Uruzgan province. Photo by Javed Tanveer/AFP

Taliban unveil negotiating team ahead of U.S. peace talks

Feb 12, 2019 - 11:43 PM

United States special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad has undertaken extensive recent peace talks with the Taliban about ending the 17-year war in Afghanistan, with another round expected in late February

TALKS. This file photo shows participants attending the opening of the two-day talks of the Taliban and Afghan opposition representatives at the President Hotel in Moscow on February 5, 2019. File photo by Yuri Kadobnov/AFP

Acting Pentagon chief Patrick Shanahan meets Afghan president in Kabul

Feb 11, 2019 - 3:04 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Shanahan meets General Scott Miller, the top US and NATO commander in Afghanistan, before visiting Camp Morehead where Americans train Afghan special force

ARRIVING IN AFGHANISTAN. Acting Pentagon chief Patrick Shanahan (front 2nd R) arrives in Kabul on February 11, 2019. Photo by Sylvie Lanteaume/AFP

Two Afghan journalists killed in attack on radio station – officials

Feb 07, 2019 - 8:07 AM

The pair are gunned down inside the studios of Radio Hamsada, a private broadcaster based in Taloqan

Taliban sit for second day with Afghan leaders in Moscow

Feb 06, 2019 - 8:10 PM

No government official is invited, despite President Ashraf Ghani's offers to talk peace, underscoring the Taliban's hostility toward the increasingly marginalized Kabul administration

TALKS. Participants attend the opening of the two-day talks of the Taliban and Afghan opposition representatives at the President Hotel in Moscow on February 5, 2019. Photo by Yuri Kadobnov/AFP

Trump 'serious' about Afghan withdrawal, Taliban says

Feb 01, 2019 - 9:21 PM

Experts hail the development, but it has prompted concerns from Afghans and observers who feared foreign troops could withdraw before a lasting peace is reached between the insurgents and the government in Kabul

Afghan president calls for 'serious talks' with Taliban

Jan 28, 2019 - 8:38 PM

'I call on the Taliban to... show their Afghan will, and accept Afghans' demand for peace, and enter serious talks with the Afghan government,' says Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

TALKS. In this file photo, Afghan president Mohammad Ashraf Ghani speaks during a press conference at Presidential Palace in Kabul on June 30, 2018. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

At least 65 killed in Taliban attack on Afghan intel base

Jan 22, 2019 - 11:53 PM

The attack on January 21 in central Wardak province targeted an intelligence training facility, officials have said, meaning information remains difficult to independently verify

DEADLY ATTACK. An Afghan military vehicle is seen near the attack site after a car bomb detonated on a military base in Maidan Sharar in Wardak province on January 21, 2019. Photo by STR / AFP)

Afghanistan's incumbent president registers for reelection

Jan 20, 2019 - 8:37 PM

President Ashraf Ghani is set for a rematch with Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, the de facto prime minister

UNREST. Afghan president Mohammad Ashraf Ghani speaks during a press conference at Presidential Palace in Kabul on June 30, 2018. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Taliban claim Kabul truck bomb attack, warn more to follow

Jan 15, 2019 - 1:48 PM

In a grim message, the militants vow to carry out more attacks in the city in direct response to the recent appointment of former spymaster and anti-Taliban veteran Amrullah Saleh as interior minister

AFTERMATH. Afghan relatives and medical staff wait for victims outside a hospital's entrance gate after a car bomb exploded near a foreign compound, in Kabul on January 14, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

30 killed in gold mine collapse in Afghanistan

Jan 06, 2019 - 7:23 PM

'The villagers have been involved in this business for decades with no government control over them,' the provincial spokesperson says

Locator map of Afghanistan

Afghan Taliban says 'post-occupation' discussed with Iran

Jan 01, 2019 - 5:41 PM

The Taliban delegation discusses with Iran 'the post-occupation situation, restoration of peace and security in Afghanistan and the region'

TALKS. Representatives of the Taliban attend international talks on Afghanistan in Moscow on November 9, 2018. Photo by Yuri Kadobnov/AFP

Iran says Afghan Taliban were in Tehran for peace talks

Dec 31, 2018 - 6:10 PM

Iran's push for peace talks which aim to bring an end to the 17-year conflict comes after Trump's withdrawal of US troops in Afghanistan

COOPERATION? Taliban forces engage in dialogue with Iran to negotiate an end to the 17-year conflict in the region, File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan presidential election delayed until July 20

Dec 31, 2018 - 12:05 AM

The presidential ballot is originally scheduled for April 20, which many observers had considered unrealistic

'Worse every day': Afghans expect 2019 to be even deadlier

Dec 30, 2018 - 12:34 PM

Ordinary Afghans say they feel increasingly despondent about the future as the Taliban and ISIS carry out almost daily attacks

BURIAL. Afghan Shiite mourners and relatives attend a burial ceremony for the 35 victims of a suicide attack in a Shiite mosque in Gardez of Paktia province on August 4, 2018. Photo by Farid Zahir/AFP

Taliban urge U.S. to exit Afghanistan or face Soviet-style defeat

Dec 27, 2018 - 6:53 PM

The Taliban's warning comes hours after President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw about half of the 14,000 US troops in Afghanistan

WARNING. The Taliban urges the United States to leave the war-torn country, noting that any future relations must be based on 'sound diplomatic and economic principles' instead of conflict. File Photo by Shah Marai/AFP

Afghan election organizers mull delaying presidential vote

Dec 27, 2018 - 2:47 PM

The country's Independent Election Commission says a delay in schedule is eyed to avoid problems which occurred during its October parliamentary election

ELECTIONS. Afghan women wait in line to vote at a polling center for the country's legislative election in Herat province on October 20, 2018. Photo by Hoshang Hashimi/AFP

At least 43 killed in Kabul government compound attack

Dec 25, 2018 - 3:17 PM

No militant group has claimed responsibility for the raid, which caps a bloody year for Afghanistan

KABUL ATTACK. An Afghan policeman stands guard near the entrance gate of the Ministry of Public Works a day after a deadly militant attack in Kabul on December 25, 2018. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan leader replaces top security chiefs in major shakeup

Dec 23, 2018 - 7:26 PM

The decision comes after US President Donald Trump's unexpected move to slash troop numbers in Afghanistan

UNREST. Afghan president Mohammad Ashraf Ghani speaks during a press conference at Presidential Palace in Kabul on June 30, 2018. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Decision made for 'significant' troop withdrawal from Afghanistan – U.S. official

Dec 21, 2018 - 10:35 AM

President Donald Trump's twin foreign policy decisions on Syria and Afghanistan could begin to unspool a series of cascading and unpredictable events across the Middle East

ATTACK. Officials say Afghan special forces are also being deployed to the southeastern city of Ghazni after the latest attempt by the Taliban to capture an urban center. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S. envoy doubts Afghan Taliban's desire for peace

Dec 20, 2018 - 10:08 PM

'If the Taliban are really seeking peace, they have to sit with the Afghan government ultimately to reach an agreement on the future political settlement in Afghanistan' United States peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad says

Trump letter to Imran Khan seeks Pakistan's help in Afghanistan

Dec 03, 2018 - 11:35 PM

Pakistan says its prime minister received a letter from the US president seeking Islamabad's support in securing a settlement in Afghanistan

IMRAN KHAN. Imran Khan of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (Movement for Justice) speaks to the media after casting his vote at a polling station during the general election in Islamabad on July 25, 2018. Photo by Aamir Qureshi/AFP

Afghan Taliban not serious about peace, says Kabul gov't chief

Nov 22, 2018 - 9:42 PM

Abdullah Abdullah, who serves as 'chief executive' of the unity government in Kabul, says 'they (the Taliban) have not shown any intention to get seriously engaged in the peace negotiations'

NOT SERIOUS. Representatives of the Taliban arrive to attend international talks on Afghanistan in Moscow on November 9, 2018. Photo byYuri Kadobnov/AFP

At least 40 killed in suicide attack on Kabul religious gathering

Nov 20, 2018 - 11:31 PM

Some 40 people are killed and 60 wounded in the blast in Kabul which targeted a gathering of religious leaders to mark the Prophet Mohammad's birthday

CITY UNDER SIEGE. An Afghan woman wearing a burqa walks at the Wazir Akbar Khan hilltop overlooking Kabul in this file photo. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP