Daily Evacuation Brief | February 3, 2023
LAST 24 HOURS
BLAST REPORTED IN KABUL – An explosion occurred in the Kote Sangi neighborhood (Police District 5) yesterday. Some accounts suggest a magnetic mine was detonated after being attached to a vehicle. There are no reports of casualties but the Taliban reportedly cut off electricity in the area adjacent to the blast and access has been tightly controlled. No further information was available.
RUMORS OF PAYOFFS TO FORMER REGIME MEMBERS – An Italian news source has published several documents purporting to show payoffs from Qatar to select members of the previous regime. The Italian source claims the funds were paid to allow the Taliban to take over the country. At this point, no corroboration of the documents or the payouts has been made.
SIZABLE HOUSE SEARCHES CONTINUE IN KABUL – Taliban searches that had been taking place throughout the week shifted to Police Districts 11 and 15 yesterday. Previously, searches had been reported in Police Districts 4 and 10 on Sunday thru Tuesday. The areas currently being searched are largely occupied by Tajiks and Panjshiris. No reports of arrests have been made as of yet.
NEW HUMANITARIAN AID DELIVERIES FROM UN USING MEN ONLY, AID AGENCIES RAISE ALARMS – Locals in several cities across Afghanistan have reported the resumption of food deliveries by UN agencies. The World Food Programme said that an ‘operational adjustment’ had been made to continue its work. The announcement has worried some donor states and aid organizations who say the approach represents acquiescence to Taliban demands and may have set a precedent that could harm female involvement in future aid projects. Others say the move is a temporary measure that will be rolled back if the Taliban ban is reversed.
AFGHAN RAILROAD AUTHORITY SAYS SERVICE WITH UZBEKISTAN WILL RESTART SOON, TRADERS ARE SKEPTICAL – The statement has left several former engineers who had worked on the transit route between Uzbekistan and Afghanistan scratching their heads as the technical modifications the Uzbeks had demanded were considered to be major projects and not quickly implemented. If the route is not reopened soon, several trade groups have warned that commodity prices (already high) will spike. The Taliban responded to these concerns by telling traders to use road transport in the meantime. Apparently, the route was closed when the Taliban regime refused to allow 65 Uzbek rail technicians into the country to supervise modernization efforts. A source in the Ministry of Defense stated that the majority of the best rail engineers had departed Afghanistan after the takeover and that many in the Authority were put in their positions based on their time spent fighting NATO forces and the former regime. The source estimated the literacy rate among these appointed officials is less than 1 in 4 and did not believe any had engineering experience.
UN SAYS KABUL HAS INFORMED THEM OF EFFORTS TO SET GUIDELINES FOR FEMALE WORK – Apparently, new guidelines are being prepared by the Taliban that will outline those activities female aid workers will be allowed to participate in. The UN head of Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief, Martin Griffiths made the announcement at a meeting on Tuesday. The new guidelines are tentatively scheduled to be released in March.
NEXT 24 HOURS
SEARCHES IN KABUL MAY PAUSE FOR FRIDAY, PLAN TO RESUME SATURDAY – The systematic searches that have been undertaken by the Taliban in select neighborhoods across Kabul are expected to pause on Friday. Apparently, the decision was made to allow people to attend prayers. Multiple sources have said the searches are far from complete though and may be tied to an effort to seize weapons caches and disrupt Resistance plans for the Spring campaign season. No further information was available.
BAD WEATHER IN WESTERN AND NORTHER PROVINCES EXPECTED TO DISRUPT TRAVEL – Rain and snow is forecasted for the next 36 hours and will add to moisture accumulations. Some roads have already been closed in remote areas and there are concerns over potential heavy flooding. At-risk Afghans are advised to plan travel accordingly.
Israeli leader in Paris for talks with France about Iran.
A young couple, who are social media influencers, and who had posted a video of them dancing in front of Tehran’s Azadi tower were arrested and imprisoned by the regime for ‘promoting corruption’ and ‘disturbing national security’.
An Iranian shipment of arms, bound for Yemen, was seized by Western naval forces (led by France) in the Gulf of Oman. Iran denied any involvement with the shipment.
Investigators say the suicide bomber responsible for the deaths of 101 police and military worshipers in the recent Mosque bombing was wearing a police uniform to gain entry to the religious site.
A Pakistani national who had been detained at the Guantanamo prison for alleged ties to al-Qaeda was transferred to Belize.
The Pakistani rupee again plunged to a new low yesterday after making modest gains in the previous week. The economy continues to worry the international community as a freefall could destabilize the region.
The Kazakh government is continuing to distance itself from Russia and has proposed closing its trade mission in Moscow. The proposal is open to public debate currently and has drawn condemnation from Russia’s lower house (State Duma). The latest proposal follows a Kazakh rejection of a Russian plan to tie the two country’s currencies together.
Leaders of the President’s political party announced their intention to begin laying the groundwork for joining the European Union. Kazakhstan has a pending bid to join the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and has been very active since 2008. Such a move may not be popular with the large Russian ethnic group who resides in the country. Obviously, such a move will not be popular in Moscow either.
By Sabawoon Samim - Afghanistan Analysts Network
A large number of Taleban fighters have moved to Afghanistan’s cities since the movement’s capture of power, many of them for the first time in their lifetime. These fighters, many of whom are from villages, had lived modest lives, entirely focused on the war. Their circumstances have changed entirely since the Taleban’s victory. Guest author Sabawoon Samim has interviewed five members of the Taleban who have come to live in Kabul, a city they had seen as being at the heart of the ‘foreign occupation’ with its ‘puppet government’ with a population degraded by Western ways. How have they found the actual Kabul and its people, and what do they think about having to earn a living, keep office hours and live in a city full of traffic and millions of other inhabitants?
By Nizamuddin Rezahi - Khaama Press
The Italian state-run network has published a document that indicates the receipt of $110,478,000 from Dr. Mutlaq AL-Qahtani, the representative of…
By Hadia Ziaei - TOLO News
The professor, who transports the books on a homemade pushcart, lamented that female students will not be able to…
By Peter Aitken - FOX News
Afghanistan's deputy minister of intelligence bragged on national television about his role in a 2018 suicide bombing in Kabul that…
By Nizamuddin Rezahi - Khaama Press
He reported that some 300 to 400 policemen allegedly raided his uncle’s house during their attempt to…
By TOLO News
They warned that the prices of commodities will increase if the railway is not…
INTERNATIONAL NEWS RELATING TO AFGHANISTAN
By Al Arabiya
“I am taking action today to impose additional visa restrictions on certain current or former Taliban members, members of non-state security groups, and other…
By Tanya Goudsouzian - Le Monde
In the days following the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul, many reports suggested that the victorious extremists represented a…
THE DAILY WTF
By Stephen Dinan - The Washington Times
The money the U.S. is sending to avert a humanitarian disaster in Afghanistan is also helping prop up the oppressive Taliban regime, and it’s gotten so…
Afghani to the Dollar: $1 – 89.70 AFN (as of 3 FEB 2023)