afghanistan - updates

Rappler's latest stories on afghanistan


'Fear and panic' as coronavirus threatens Afghanistan, Pakistan

Feb 27, 2020 - 7:41 AM

'People are illiterate, you can't get the message through to them,' says a Kabul-based physician

FREE MASKS. A volunteer hands out free face masks to people as a preventive measure against the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, in Herat city on February 26, 2020. Photo by Hoshang Hashimi/AFP

Australian special forces probed for alleged Afghan war crimes

Feb 25, 2020 - 3:00 PM

The Inspector-General of the Australian Defence Force says 55 separate incidents are being investigated as part of a years-long probe into allegations Australian soldiers committed war crimes while in Afghanistan

PROBE. In this photo taken on January 20, 2010, an Australian soldier of Omlet-c company fires an AK-47 assault rifle used by Afghan soldiers during practice firing at a forward operating base (FOB) in Mirwais in the southern province of Uruzgan.  File photo by Deshakalyan Chowdhury/AFP

Trump says he would sign a peace deal with the Taliban

Feb 23, 2020 - 11:00 PM

A partial truce is in effect in Afghanistan and could ultimately lead to a withdrawal of US forces after more than 18 years

RETURN. US President Donald Trump walks on the South Lawn upon his return to the White House in Washington, DC, on February 16, 2020. (Photo by Olivier Douliery / AFP

Pakistan closes Iranian border, Afghanistan bans travel over virus fears

Feb 23, 2020 - 10:35 PM

Iran reports 8 deaths from the novel coronavirus, the highest toll of any country outside China

MASKED. An Iranian woman wearing a protective mask checks her mobile telephone as she walks in a street in the capital Tehran on February 20, 2020. Photo by Atta Kenare/AFP

Afghans mark start of week-long partial truce amid isolated attacks

Feb 22, 2020 - 4:09 PM

The partial truce is expected to set the conditions for Washington and the insurgents to sign a deal that could ultimately pull US troops out after more than 18 years

A general view of the capital city of Kabul is pictured on August 3, 2019, as new talks between the US and the Taliban go on. - Washington is hoping for a breakthrough as talks between the US and the Taliban resumed in Doha on Saturday in a bid to end 18 years of war in Afghanistan. (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP)

U.S. prepares to sign withdrawal deal with Taliban on February 29

Feb 21, 2020 - 9:36 PM

Both US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the Taliban issue statements saying they have agreed to sign the accord on February 29 in Doha, following the one-week partial truce

US-TALIBAN TALKS. In this file photo taken on August 27, 2017 US Marines and Afghan Commandos stand together as an Afghan Air Force helicopter flies past during a combat training exercise at Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Ashraf Ghani secures second term as Afghan president – final results

Feb 18, 2020 - 10:05 PM

'The election commission... declares Mr Ashraf Ghani, who has won 50.64% of the votes, as the president of Afghanistan,' election commission chief Hawa Alam Nuristani says

ASHRAF GHANI. 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

U.S. announces partial Taliban truce, Trump says peace deal 'close'

Feb 14, 2020 - 8:28 AM

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani reports 'notable progress' in negotiations with the Islamist extremists

SOLDIERS. In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army (ANA) checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. Photo by Thomas Watkin/AFP

2 U.S. troops killed by Afghan soldier in Nangarhar attack

Feb 09, 2020 - 4:33 PM

It is not immediately clear if the incident was a deliberate act by an 'infiltrator' or an accident, says the Nangarhar provincial governor

US TROOPS. In this file photograph taken on July 7, 2018, U.S. Army soldiers from NATO look on as U.S. flag flies at a checkpoint during a patrol against Islamic State militants at the Deh Bala district in the eastern province of Nangarhar Province. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Plane crashes in eastern Afghanistan – officials

Jan 27, 2020 - 7:18 PM

It is not immediately clear how many people were on board, or if the crashed plane was a passenger or military jet

More than 130 dead as severe weather hits Pakistan, Afghanistan

Jan 14, 2020 - 5:56 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Forecasts suggest more harsh weather is on the way

SNOWFALL IN PAKISTAN. A woman walks after heavy snowfall in Quetta, Pakistan on January 13, 2020. Photo by Banaras Khan/AFP

Taliban: 'No ceasefire plans' in Afghanistan

Dec 30, 2019 - 8:33 PM

The statement from the insurgents comes as local and international forces brace for another bloody winter amid renewed US-Taliban talks

KABUL. A general view of the capital city of Kabul, Afghanistan is pictured on August 3, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan war caused 100,000 civilian casualties in last decade – U.N.

Dec 26, 2019 - 10:54 PM

The announcement comes as the Taliban and US continue to hold talks aimed at drawing a close to America's longest war

40 years on, veterans still grapple with Soviet-Afghan war

Dec 23, 2019 - 1:05 PM

This month marks the 40th anniversary of the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan, the beginning of a decade-long guerilla war that killed up to 2 million Afghans

40 YEARS ON. This photo taken on December 5, 2019 shows former mujahideen fighter Shah Sulaiman showing his wounded leg from the Soviet–Afghan War, in Kabul. Photo by Noorullah Shirzada

U.S. denies lying to public about Afghanistan

Dec 21, 2019 - 2:16 PM

Last week The Washington Post began publishing 'The Afghanistan Papers,' a trove of papers documenting the failure to defeat the Taliban and to strengthen the Afghan government

PRICE OF WAR. 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

U.S. to announce 4,000-troop drawdown from Afghanistan – media

Dec 16, 2019 - 8:23 AM

NBC cites 3 current and former US officials as saying the Trump administration intends to announce a drawdown of 4,000 troops from Afghanistan

TRUMP AND THE TROOPS. In this file photo taken on November 28, 2019, US President Donald Trump speaks to the troops during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit at Bagram Air Field,in Afghanistan. Photo by Olivier Douliery/AFP

9 Afghan forces killed in Taliban insider attack – official

Dec 14, 2019 - 6:46 PM

The Afghan Ministry of Defense says the national army troops 'were martyred by Taliban terrorists in Qarabagh district of Ghazni province'

Afghan election challenger allows recount

Dec 14, 2019 - 4:53 PM

The country's chief executive Abdullah Abdullah ends his opposition to a recount, but demands that the electoral commission to first invalidate about 300,000 'fraudulent' ballots out of a total of 1.8 million

CHIEF EXECUTIVE. Afghanistan's Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah on November 4 dismissed a new peace proposal by his election rival President Ashraf Ghani as an unrealistic "wishlist", and again called into question the validity of thousands of votes from recent polls. AFP photo

Body of slain doctor arrives in Japan after Afghan shooting

Dec 08, 2019 - 8:30 PM

Tetsu Nakamura is killed in Jalalabad, the main city in the eastern province of Nangarhar where he had worked since the 1980s.

Trump visits troops in Afghanistan, says Taliban talks back on

Nov 29, 2019 - 8:05 AM

On a brief visit to Bagram Airfield outside the capital of Kabul, the US president serves turkey dinner to soldiers, poses for photographs and delivers a speech after meeting Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

US President Donald Trump speaks to the troops during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit at Bagram Air Field, on November 28, 2019 in Afghanistan. Olivier Douliery / AFP

Foreign national killed as U.N. vehicle hit in Kabul blast – official

Nov 24, 2019 - 11:53 PM

At least 5 other people are wounded in the grenade attack

Taliban release 2 Western hostages in Afghanistan

Nov 19, 2019 - 11:19 PM

The Taliban's main spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, confirms that the transfer of the Taliban prisoners 'is complete, and they have arrived where they were supposed to come'

SWAP. This file handout photo taken on October 15, 2014, by the Afghan National Directorate of Security shows Taliban prisoner Anas Haqqani, a senior leader of the Haqqani network, in Kabul. AFP PHOTO/Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS)

Afghanistan to release senior Taliban prisoners in apparent swap

Nov 12, 2019 - 6:59 PM

The 3 Taliban prisoners include Anas Haqqani, who was seized in 2014 and whose older brother is the deputy Taliban leader and head of the Haqqani network, a notorious Taliban affiliate

SWAP. In this file photo, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani speaks during a joint press conference at the Presidential Palace in Kabul on November 6, 2018. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan chief executive wants halt to election recount

Nov 10, 2019 - 4:58 PM

'A fraud-marred election will not be accepted. The result should be based on the clean votes of our people,' says Afgahnistan's Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah

CHIEF EXECUTIVE. Afghanistan's Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah on November 4 dismissed a new peace proposal by his election rival President Ashraf Ghani as an unrealistic "wishlist", and again called into question the validity of thousands of votes from recent polls. AFP photo

PH has most number of unsolved journalist killings – report

Oct 29, 2019 - 9:31 PM

The 2019 Global Impunity Index lists 41 unsolved media killings in the Philippines over the last 10 years

9 YEARS. Candles lit in the shape of number 9 in commemoration of the 9 years since Maguindanao Massacre. Photo by Jaira Krishelle Balboa/Rappler

Young Taliban must be heard, says new United Nations youth envoy

Oct 29, 2019 - 3:48 PM

For 20-year-old youth delegate Aisha Khurram, reaching out to all young Afghans – including those joining the ranks of the Taliban insurgency – is critical

AISHA KHURRAM. In this photo taken on October 16, 2019, Aisha Khurram, 20, Afghanistan's youth representative to the United Nations, speaks during an interview with AFP in Kabul. Photo by Wakil Kohsar /AFP

Afghan election results delayed again

Oct 27, 2019 - 7:33 PM

Election officials cite several technical issues slowing the counting of ballots, including an attempt from unknown quarters to hack the central system of Dermalog

An Afghan security personnel stands guard as women voters wait to cast their ballot at a polling station Herat on September 28, 2019. - Afghans headed to the polls amid tight security as voting got under way in the presidential election, following a bloody campaign that has been marred by repeated attacks across Afghanistan. (Photo by HOSHANG HASHIMI / AFP)

No Syria-type pullout planned for Afghanistan – Pentagon chief

Oct 21, 2019 - 9:33 PM

US Defense Secretary Mark Esper also hints that some sort of residual US force might remain in Syria to protect oil fields, but stresses no decision has been taken

MARK ESPER. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper holds a media briefing at the Pentagon August 28, 2019 in Arlington, Virginia. File photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images/AFP

At least 62 killed in Afghan mosque blast

Oct 18, 2019 - 11:48 PM

The blast comes after the UN released a new report saying an 'unprecedented' number of civilians were killed or wounded in Afghanistan from July to September

VIOLENCE. A volunteer carries an injured youth to hospital, following a bomb blast in Haska Mina district of Nangarhar Province on October 18, 2019. Photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

3 killed, dozens of children wounded in Taliban truck blast

Oct 16, 2019 - 2:27 PM

(UPDATED) The bomb outside a police headquarters building also partially destroys a nearby madrassa, or religious school

At least 30 civilians died in May U.S. strikes in Afghanistan – U.N. probe

Oct 09, 2019 - 5:54 PM

The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan says it 'verified 39 civilian casualties... due to the May 5 air strikes.' It also got 'credible information' about an additional 30 deaths, which are being verified.

South Asia region Al-Qaeda chief killed in Afghanistan – officials

Oct 08, 2019 - 10:34 PM

Afghan officials confirm that Asim Umar, who led Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent from its inception in 2014, was killed during a September 23 raid on a Taliban compound in the Musa Qala district of Helmand province

Abdullah claims win over Ghani in Afghan vote well ahead of results

Sep 30, 2019 - 7:21 PM

(UPDATED) The move is likely to stir political tensions across Afghanistan and brings to mind the election Abdullah Abdullah and his top rival Ashraf Ghani bitterly contested in 2014

AFTER VOTING. In this handout photograph taken and released by Afghanistan's Office of Chief Executive on September 28, 2019, Afghan presidential candidate and current Chief Executive Officer, Abdullah Abdullah (C), leaves after casting his vote outside a polling station in Kabul. AFP PHOTO / AFGHANISTAN'S OFFICE OF CHIEF EXECUTIVE

Afghans vote in presidential election amid deadly violence

Sep 29, 2019 - 8:29 AM

Taliban bombings and mortar attacks at polling centers kill 2 civilians and wound 27 others

ELECTION SECURITY. An Afghan security personnel stands guard as women voters wait to cast their ballot at a polling station in Herat on September 28, 2019. Photo by Hoshang Hashimi/AFP

Blasts as insurgents try to disrupt Afghan presidential election

Sep 28, 2019 - 12:56 PM

(UPDATED) At least 15 people are wounded in Kandahar after a bomb goes off at a polling station about two hours after the start of voting

ELECTION SECURITY. An Afghan security personnel stands guard as women voters wait to cast their ballot at a polling station Herat on September 28, 2019. Photo by Hoshang Hashimi/AFP

Taliban car bomb flattens hospital as Afghan violence surges ahead of vote

Sep 19, 2019 - 12:51 PM

(3rd UPDATE) The surge in violence, with civilians paying the heaviest price, comes after US President Donald Trump called off talks with the Taliban

AFGHAN VIOLENCE. An Afghan security personnel looks on as he investigates the site where a Taliban car bomb detonated near an intelligence services building in Qalat in Zabul province on September 19, 2019. Photo by Javed Tanveer/AFP)

Taliban kill at least 48 in bloody day ahead of Afghan polls

Sep 17, 2019 - 5:43 PM

(3rd UPDATE) In a statement claiming responsibility for both blasts, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says the attack near President Ashraf Ghani's rally was deliberately aimed at disrupting the September 28 elections

ANOTHER BLAST. A wounded Afghan man is wheeled on a stretcher at the Wazir Akbar Khan hospital following a blast in Kabul on September 17, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan Taliban rescind ban on Red Cross

Sep 15, 2019 - 4:23 PM

The Taliban also restores security guarantees for those working for the ICRC

RED CROSS. In this file photo, an Afghan resident walks at the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) hospital in Herat province on August 17, 2014. Aref Karimi/AFP

Afghanistan's Taliban sends warning to Trump in bitter exchange

Sep 12, 2019 - 9:57 PM

'Trump must tread carefully. He has yet to grasp the type of nation he is dealing with,' says Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid

SUICIDE ATTACK. Afghan National Army solders inspect the site of a suicide car bomb attack near a base of elite Afghan special forces in Char Asiab district, south of the capital Kabul on September 12, 2019. Photo by STR/AFP

On 9/11, Trump vows to hit Taliban 'harder' than ever

Sep 11, 2019 - 11:17 PM

In his Pentagon speech, President Donald Trump also issues a threat against militants ever attacking on US soil again, saying the response would be unlike any ever seen before

9/11. US President Donald Trump speaks during a 9/11 memorial ceremony at the Pentagon to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks September 11, 2019 in Arlington, Virginia. Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images/AFP

Taliban vows to fight on after Trump says talks are 'dead'

Sep 10, 2019 - 4:32 PM

The renewed war of words between the two sides raises the specter of violence in Afghanistan as Trump and the Taliban pledge to take the fight to each other

DONALD TRUMP. In this file photo taken on September 4, 2019 US President Donald Trump updates the media on Hurricane Dorian preparedness from the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, DC. Photo by Jim Watson/AFP

U.S., Taliban keep open door to talks after summit scrapped

Sep 09, 2019 - 9:36 AM

Washington says it would not relent in fighting the militants after US President Donald Trump blames the scuttling of the meeting on a Taliban attack that killed a US soldier

MIKE POMPEO. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrives on September 3, 2019 at the European Parliament in Brussels for a meeting with European Parliament President. Photo by Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP

On again, off again: Erratic history of talks with the Taliban

Sep 08, 2019 - 5:31 PM

Washington has tried to obtain promises from the Taliban, resulting in a tragic series of missed opportunities and all but guaranteeing suspicion around any new deal

TALKS. In this file photo, Markus Potzel (2nd-L), Germany' Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Mutlaq bin Majid al-Qahtani (4th-L), the special envoy of the Qatari Foreign Minister for Terrorism and Mediation in the Settlement of Disputes, attend the Intra Afghan Dialogue talks in the Qatari capital Doha on July 7, 2019. Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP

In bombshell, Trump calls off secret summit, talks with Taliban

Sep 08, 2019 - 8:25 AM

(3rd UPDATE) The US President hits the Taliban for claiming responsibility for a deadly car bombing in Kabul amid ongoing peace negotiations

PEACE DEAL NO MORE? US President Donald Trump gestures as he speaks to the press while departing the White House in Washington, DC, on August 23, 2019, for the G7 Summit in France. Photo by Alastair Pike/AFP

Taliban kill at least 10 in 'horrifying' Kabul bombing

Sep 05, 2019 - 2:48 PM

(UPDATED) The car bomb blast shakes Shash Darak, a heavily fortified area adjacent to the Green Zone and home to several important complexes

AFTER THE BOMBING. A wounded man receives treatment at the Wazir Akbar Khan hospital following a suicide attack in Kabul on September 5, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Kabul blast toll rises as U.S. tries to finalize Taliban deal

Sep 03, 2019 - 12:04 PM

(UPDATED) The bombing is the third major Taliban attack in as many days – and the violence is likely to continue, Taliban expert Rahimullah Yusufzai says

Afghan security forces arrive at the site of a suicide attack near a security forces base on the outskirts of Kunduz on September 2, 2019. The US and the Taliban are on the brink of striking a deal after 18 years of war, Washington's top negotiator said on September 2, ahead of a visit to Afghanistan where fresh violence rocked the north. STR / AFP

U.S. to pull troops from 5 Afghan bases under deal with Taliban

Sep 02, 2019 - 11:56 PM

'We have agreed that if the conditions proceed according to the agreement, we will leave within 135 days 5 bases in which we are present now,' says US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad

WHAT'S IN THE DEAL? 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

Afghan forces claim upper hand after Taliban attack Kunduz city

Sep 01, 2019 - 2:56 PM

The attack comes as US and Taliban negotiators continue a 9th round of talks in Doha

IN KUNDUZ. Afghan soldiers gather at a street in Kunduz, Afghanistan on August 31, 2019. Photo by Bashir Khan Safi/AFP

U.S., Taliban on 'threshold' of deal – U.S. Afghan envoy

Sep 01, 2019 - 9:31 AM

Washington's special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad says the deal would help foster 'a unified, sovereign Afghanistan that does not threaten the United States, its allies, or any other country'

SHORAB CAMP. 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 at the Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province on August 28, 2017. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Trump: U.S. to keep 8,600 troops in Afghanistan after deal with Taliban

Aug 29, 2019 - 10:46 PM

'We're always going to have a presence,' says President Donald Trump

US TROOPS. In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army (ANA) checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. File photo by Thomas Watkins/AFP