afghanistan - updates

Rappler's latest stories on afghanistan

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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

Joy turns to horror as ISIS bomber kills 63 at Kabul wedding

Aug 18, 2019 - 12:39 PM

(UPDATED) Interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi says at least 63 people have been killed and 182 injured

WEDDING BOMBING. Afghan security personnel walk in front of a wedding hall after a deadly bomb blast in Kabul on August 18, 2019.Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Fears in U.S. of bad peace deal with the Taliban

Aug 18, 2019 - 9:52 AM

In tweets, interviews, and op-ed pieces in newspapers, Americans caution against bringing home the 14,000 United States troops in Afghanistan

WITHDRAWAL WOES. 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 checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. Photo by Thomas Watkins/AFP

Latest round of U.S.-Taliban talks finishes

Aug 12, 2019 - 3:57 PM

'Work was tedious & effective. Both sides agreed to consult their respective leaderships for next steps,' Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says on Twitter

KABUL. A general view of the capital city of Kabul is pictured on August 3, 2019, as talks between the US and the Taliban occur. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

At least 95 wounded in Taliban blast in Kabul

Aug 07, 2019 - 4:01 PM

The car bomb exploded near the entrance of a police station in western Kabul around 4:30 am GMT, interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi says

Taliban threaten Afghan presidential elections

Aug 06, 2019 - 9:27 PM

Many observers think the poll will be postponed again – it has already been pushed back twice this year – to create space for a peace deal to be finalized between the US and the Taliban

AFGHAN ELECTIONS. A local residents pushes a wheelbarrow past a billboard with a poster of Afghan presidential candidate and incumbent President of Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani (C) is seen during the first day of the presidential election campaign in Kabul on July 28,2019. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S., Taliban push for peace in day 2 of talks

Aug 04, 2019 - 10:44 AM

Efforts are underway to organize a meeting between US envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban co-founder Mullah Baradar

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. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Civilian casualties in Afghan war jump in July

Aug 03, 2019 - 9:51 PM

According to the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, more than 1,500 civilians were killed or wounded in the Afghan conflict in July

CIVILIAN DEATHS. A dead woman is brought to a morgue at the Wazir Akbar Khan hospital following an attack in Kabul on July 28, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S. eyes breakthrough in push for peace with Taliban

Aug 03, 2019 - 5:33 PM

(UPDATED) The United States wants to withdraw thousands of troops but only in return for the insurgent group renouncing Al-Qaeda and curbing attacks

PEACE TALKS. 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. A skinny tangle of razor wire snakes across the entrance to the Afghan army checkpoint, the only obvious barrier separating the soldiers inside from any Taliban fighters that might be nearby. Photo by Thomas Watkins/AFP

At least 34 killed as Afghan bus hits 'Taliban' bomb

Jul 31, 2019 - 2:11 PM

(UPDATED) The blast rips through a passenger bus on a main highway in Farah province, at around 0130 GMT, authorities say, killing mainly women and children

ROADSIDE BUS BOMBING. An Afghan man injured when a bus hit a roadside bomb on the Kandahar-Herat highway is treated by medical staff at a hospital in Herat on July 31, 2019. Photo by Hoshang Hashimi/AFP

Pompeo: Trump wants Afghan drawdown before 2020 election

Jul 30, 2019 - 12:22 AM

For the past year, the US has been negotiating with the Taliban to reach a peace agreement ending the 18-year war

AFGHANISTAN. Before winning the presidential election in 2016, Donald Trump pledged to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan and end America's longest war. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/Agence France-Presse

Explosion rocks Kabul, at least 6 wounded

Jul 28, 2019 - 9:39 PM

Interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi says the explosion happened close to a well-known wedding hall just hours before the official start of the campaign season for the presidential elections

Afghan-Taliban talks could happen within two weeks – minister

Jul 27, 2019 - 11:45 PM

Afghan state minister for peace affairs Abdul Salam Rahimi says the government is preparing for 'direct talks' with Taliban

CEASEFIRE. Afghan Taliban militants ride a motorbike as they took to the street to celebrate ceasefire on the second day of Eid in the outskirts of Jalalabad on June 16, 2018. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

At least 10 killed as 3 blasts rock Kabul

Jul 25, 2019 - 2:15 PM

(UPDATED) The bombings come amid an increase in violence in Kabul and around Afghanistan, where the war is taking a continued toll even amid a US-led effort to make a peace deal with the Taliban

AFGHANISTAN BLAST. A boy walks past the wreckage of a bus following a suicide bombing in Kabul on July 25, 2019. Photo by AFP

IMF slashes Mideast growth projections over Iran sanctions

Jul 23, 2019 - 11:35 PM

The International Monetary Fund projects 2019 economic growth for the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan would be 1%, its worst since the IMF put them in one group in 2009

Man's best friend: The dogs who sniff out explosives in Kabul

Jul 21, 2019 - 11:00 AM

It takes about two years to train an explosives dog, and the process is intense for both the handler and the canine

In this photo taken on April 7, 2019, an explosive detection dog is kept on leash during a practice session at the Mine Detection Centre (MDC) in Kabul. Naya, a three-year-old Belgian malinois, focuses intently as she leaps over hurdles and zooms through tunnels on an obstacle course at a training centre on a hill overlooking Kabul. WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP

At least 8 killed in blast near Kabul University

Jul 19, 2019 - 4:44 PM

The blast comes amid an unending wave of violence across Afghanistan, where civilians are being killed every day in the country's gruelling conflict, now in its 18th year

EXPLOSION. Afghans security personnel investigate at the site of a bomb explosion in front of Kanul University in Kabul on July 19, 2019. Photo by AFP

5 dead in suicide blast at Afghan wedding – official

Jul 12, 2019 - 3:22 PM

The Taliban, who have pledged to try to reduce civilian casualties, denies responsibility for the blast in Nangarhar province

Majority of U.S. vets say Afghanistan war 'not worth fighting' – survey

Jul 11, 2019 - 10:36 AM

The survey results come as the US and the Taliban engage in talks on bringing to a close the conflict which Washington launched in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States

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. A skinny tangle of razor wire snakes across the entrance to the Afghan army checkpoint, the only obvious barrier separating the soldiers inside from any Taliban fighters that might be nearby. THOMAS WATKINS / AFP

Afghan rivals conclude talks on 'roadmap for peace'

Jul 09, 2019 - 10:00 AM

The flurry of talks will continue with the resumption of direct US-Taliban contact also in Doha on July 9 as both sides eye a resolution to the bloody 18-year conflict

TALKS END. The spokesman for the Taliban in Qatar, Suhhail Shaheen, attends the Intra Afghan Dialogue talks in the Qatari capital Doha on July 8, 2019. Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP

Afghan foes meet in bid to secure peace

Jul 07, 2019 - 6:22 PM

An agreement with the Taliban expects to see US withdrawal from Afghanistan but the thorny issues of women's rights, power-sharing, and the role of regional powers like Pakistan and India remain unresolved

INTRA-AFGHAN DIALOGUE. Dozens of powerful Afghans met with a Taliban delegation on July 7, amid separate talks between the US and the insurgents seeking to end 18 years of war. Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP

U.S. says latest Taliban talks 'most productive' so far

Jul 06, 2019 - 11:47 PM

(UPDATED) Insurgents meet with the US envoy in Doha to hammer out a deal that would see the US military quit Afghanistan in return for various guarantees

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

Fresh bid set to bring Afghans to table for peace deal

Jul 02, 2019 - 2:58 PM

US president Donald Trump says he wants to withdraw American forces from Afghanistan, but will leave a strong intelligence presence there to counter what he terms the 'Harvard of terrorists'

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

At least 1 dead, 65 wounded as Taliban detonate car bomb in Kabul

Jul 01, 2019 - 2:57 PM

(UPDATED) 'Among the wounded, many children who were going to school,' according to a hospital statement

KABUL EXPLOSION. Afghan men walk on a road as smoke rises from the site of a car bomb attack in Kabul on July 1, 2019. Photo by STR / AFP

Taliban bombers kill 19, including Afghan election workers

Jun 30, 2019 - 10:24 PM

The Taliban claims responsibility for the attack, with a spokesman tweeting that their fighters captured the district center, killing 57 security forces

U.S., Taliban resume talks on ending war

Jun 29, 2019 - 11:03 PM

The talks mark the 7th round of negotiations aimed at ending America's longest war

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

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