Daily Evacuation Brief | December 12, 2022
LAST 24 HOURS
PAKISTAN / AFGHANISTAN TRADE BLOWS AT BORDER – Border security forces traded artillery and heavy mortar fire on Sunday near the Spin Boldak-Chaman crossing. Taliban officials claimed Pakistani security forces had crossed into Afghan territory to repair fencing and the situation escalated. Pakistan has reported that 7 people were killed (6 non-combatants, and 1 Army soldier) and that over 30 non-combatants are gravely injured. Afghanistan reported 3 deaths (1 Taliban fighter, and 2 non-combatants) and approximately 10 wounded. Both sides have rushed reinforcements to the border and more are expected to arrive today. Pakistan has deployed units of self-propelled, long-range artillery to reinforce the border around Chaman. Taliban reinforcements have consisted of truck-borne light infantry units. The border crossing is currently closed to all traffic and local eyewitnesses have reported some local residents were evacuating the town of Chaman. The situation remains tense and an escalation of the violence could occur with little to no warning.
HEKMATYAR CONVENES PLANNING GROUP – After making provocative statements about an unknown threat to his followers, the warlord has reputedly called for a conference of his close associates (those with military experience) as well as close allies from the Soviet occupation days. It is not clear who he believes may be targeting him and whether he intends to launch some kind of operation. It is also not clear if the Taliban would sanction any such operation. He has often been at odds with the Taliban leadership and may represent a threat to their power.
MODERATE EARTHQUAKE HITS SEVERAL PROVINCES – A 4.2 magnitude quake rattled Kabul and several other Provinces on Sunday morning. No casualties or damage has been reported.
TAJIKISTAN QUIETLY INCREASES TROOP LEVELS ALONG AFGHAN BORDER – Local sources have noticed the addition of several hundred troops stationed along the Tajik border in recent days. The reinforcements began arriving shortly after the news was leaked that the perpetrators behind the thwarted attack on Hekmatyar’s political offices were Tajikistan nationals.
NEXT 24 HOURS
THREAT OF VIOLENCE ALONG BORDER WILL REMAIN HIGH – Yesterday’s events at Spin Boldak-Chaman marked a significant escalation between Pakistan and Afghanistan. Not since the air and artillery strikes that were carried out by Pakistan earlier this year has the threat of war been so high. There are several contributing factors that make further violent exchanges a dangerous proposition for regional peace:
The continued construction on the Durand Line has incensed Afghanistan’s populace
The assumption is that the TTP is using Afghanistan as a safe haven from which to launch attacks
Pakistan’s dependence on Afghan coal to meet its domestic energy needs
Political and economic turmoil in both countries
Pakistan’s perceived cooperation with the United States
The worrisome part of this situation is that Kabul/Kandahar does not appear to have much control over local commanders and units. This has been demonstrated on several occasions and along more than one border. While it is possible the Taliban have empowered local commanders to act of their own volition, the way earlier cross-border incidents that have occurred seemed to indicate the actions taken by local commanders had not been sanctioned. A similar situation exists on the Western border with Iran, and Kabul is continually obliged to send delegations to smooth over incidents with their Iranian counterparts. At-risk Afghans are advised to continue monitoring the situation closely. If a border crossing must be undertaken, it is recommended to call ahead and verify the situation. Even if the current ruckus is de-escalated, the cross-border conflict looks as if it will be a problem well into the new year.
POSSIBLE FOLLOW-ON-TERROR ATTACKS – Terror organizations often attempt to exploit the confusion and chaos created by cross-border disputes. With active terrorist organizations in both Pakistan and Afghanistan, one or both countries could see potential terror attacks in the coming days. At-risk Afghans should be cognizant of their surroundings and limit exposure:
in public places where people gather
near Taliban/Pakistani security checkpoints
in places of worship and minority neighborhoods
on public transportation
Human rights groups fear that more convicted protestors will be executed within the next 48 hours.
Some within the Iranian film industry who were arrested for supporting the protests have been freed.
Protests continue and social media sites are filled with videos and photos of thousands taking part in nightly marches.
Former PM Khan casts blame for looming default at ruling regime’s feet. Critics point to Khan’s tenure as PM as the impetus for the economic meltdown.
A police station was attacked by RPG rockets in Punjab. Authorities say it was the work of terrorists.
Questioning the basis of clerical shariah
By A. Faizur Rahman - The Hindu
Last month, Afghanistan’s self-styled supreme leader Hibatullah Akhundzada decreed that cases in which shariah conditions of hudud (crimes against God) and qisas (justified retaliation) were fulfilled, judges must implement “Islamic” punishments because “this is the ruling of shariah, and my command, which is obligatory.” Within days of this arrogant pronouncement, 11 men and three women were publicly flogged by the Taliban for committing “moral crimes” such as theft and adultery.
Pakistan-Afghanistan Border Clashes Kill 7, Injure 31
By Ayaz Gul - VOA
The Pakistani military said in a statement the skirmishes took place in the southwestern border town of Chaman, adjacent to the Afghan province of…
Officials: Islamic System Needs Skilled, Educated People
By Nazir Shinwari - TOLO News
The acting minister of Border and Tribal Affairs said that for the growth of the Islamic system, skilled individuals are needed in…
Kabul Residents Call to Resume Passport Distribution
By TOLO News
The residents said that they are facing severe challenges and cannot take their patients abroad due to lack of…
Afghanistan Investment Desk Set Up at Kabul Airport to Facilitate Visa on Arrival
By Saqalain Eqbal - Khaama Press
The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister of the caretaker administration in Afghanistan and the Ministry of Industry and…
Pakistan FM Meets With Head of OIC on Afghanistan
By Mohammad Farshad Daryosh - TOLO News
In a meeting with the head of the OIC, Pakistan's foreign minister said that the fight against terrorism, respect for human rights, and…
Pakistan Kills 4 ISIS Militants Near Afghan Border
By Saqalain Eqbal - Khaama Press
According to Pakistan’s provincial counterterrorism unit, the killed militants entered the remote North Waziristan border area from Afghanistan…
INTERNATIONAL NEWS RELATING TO AFGHANISTAN
Ottawa needs to end its roadblocks to helping Afghans
By Toronto Star
If you want to know how bad things have gotten in Afghanistan, consider the new term coined to describe the…
Japan’s ambassador meets Muttaqi in Kabul
By Ariana News
Japan’s ambassador to Afghanistan has met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and said that his country will try to…
THE DAILY WTF
IEA capable to decide Afghans’ fate
By The Kabul Times
The issue of human rights in Afghanistan, has become a hot discussion in many world countries which claim they are…
Afghani to the Dollar: $1 – 87.47 AFN (as of 12 DEC 2022)