Afghanistan. Afghanistan took several steps towards peace and normality in 2002, but the legacy of the Taliban regime and the civil war was constantly reminded. A series of serious incidents showed that peace is far from being secured.
According to Countryaah website, national day of Afghanistan is every August 19. The ISAF international force of about 4,500 was stationed in January in and around Kabul to protect the new government. The capital’s airport was reopened and civil air traffic got underway. The Democratic Constitution of 1964 was provisionally put into operation, which included meant that freedom of the press was guaranteed.
In February, the training of soldiers began for a new army, which in the long term is intended to guarantee stability in the country. In March, thousands of schools were reopened and up to 1.8 million children could begin the spring term. The education, which was severely neglected during the Taliban, became one of the most important tasks of the provisional regime.
In northern Afghanistan, however, Pashtuns suffered severe persecution as revenge for the Taliban’s repression. Tens of thousands of Pashtuns fled south. In March, US and Afghan forces in eastern Afghanistan fought for several weeks against Taliban soldiers and members of the al-Qaeda terror network. Constant attacks and threatening leaflets in mainly the eastern provinces reminded that the Taliban remained.
In February, Abdul Rahman was murdered at Kabul Airport. The murder was suspected to be a settlement between government factions, which gave a warning signal about the tensions within the provisional regime. Defense Minister Mohammad Qasim Fahim was attacked during a visit to Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan in April. Four civilians were killed when a bomb exploded near Fahim’s car.
In April, ex-wife Zahir Shah returned to Kabul after nearly 29 years in exile in Italy. The return was postponed several weeks after reports of murder threats against the 87-year-old monarch. Nearly 300 people who were reported to have ties to the Taliban-friendly former Prime Minister Gulbuddin Hekmatyar were arrested in Kabul.
In the spring, elections were held for the council bill, Loya Jirga, which gathered in June in Kabul to elect a head of state and a new transitional government. Loya jirga also had quoted places for women, religious leaders, refugees, nomads and other groups. Provisional government leader Hamid Karzai was elected president by a large majority for the next 18 months, but thereafter the agreement was over. Many delegates complained that the warlords who were to blame for Afghanistan’s decline had too much influence over the Council meeting and that there were threats and pressures. Although Karzai tried to broaden the transition government’s ethnic composition, the new minister also came to be dominated by the Tajiks from the so-called Northern Alliance, who have been at the forefront of resistance to the Taliban.
Shortly after the Council meeting, Vice President Abdul Qadir was assassinated. In September, at least 26 people were killed by a car bomb in Kabul. On the same day, Hamid Karzai was subjected to a murder attempt during a visit to Qandahar, southern Afghanistan. Because of the dangerous situation in the country, Karzai has only been using US bodyguards for a few months.
Continued US bomb attacks fueled dissatisfaction with the transitional government and its dependence on foreign soldiers. In July, forty people were killed when US flights bombed a wedding party in the province of Uruzgan.
Meanwhile, local armed settlements were going on between rival warlords, especially in the provinces of Paktia in the east and Samangan in the north. The government had little opportunity to quell these unrest and the major powers of the UN Security Council rejected all appeals for the ISAF security force to be expanded and stationed around the country. The government was also powerless in the face of the opium land, which has gained momentum following the fall of the Taliban. Opium production for 2002 was estimated at 3,400 tonnes, compared to only 185 tonnes in 2001.
Dozens killed in suicide attack on military base
At least 30 soldiers are killed when a suicide bomber detonates an explosive device in a car inside a military base in the eastern Afghan province of Ghazni. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, but a day later authorities say a Taliban operative has been killed in an airstrike in Ghazni. Several other Taliban fighters were killed in the same plane crash.
Assistance from the outside world is declining
At a digital donor conference in Geneva, the outside world promises to assist Afghanistan with a total of $ 12 to 13 billion during the period 2021 to 2024. This is a one-fifth reduction compared to the $ 15.2 billion promised four years ago in Brussels, for the period 2017 to 2020. It is also significantly smaller than what the UN Development Program UNDP has expected.
The IMF grants a new loan
The IMF grants Afghanistan a $ 370 million loan. The money will be paid out semi-annually for 3.5 years to reduce the negative effects of the corona pandemic. The loan will primarily be used to stimulate the economy, fight corruption and reduce poverty.
More than 20 dead in terrorist attacks against Kabul University
At least 22 people were killed and nearly 30 were injured when gunmen stormed the university in Kabul. Police and the military fight the attackers in an hour of firefight and three perpetrators are killed. The Sunni extremist group Islamic State (IS) takes on the act, but the police later arrest a man who they say is the mastermind behind the attack and who is connected to the terrorist network Haqqani, with ties to the Taliban.