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Daily Evacuation Brief | January 12, 2023
LAST 24 HOURS
SUICIDE BOMBER TARGETS MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS IN KABUL – A suicide bomb attack near the entrance to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs occurred at approximately 1600hrs local yesterday. Casualty figures are in dispute with news outlets reporting between 5-20 were killed in the blast. An additional 20-30 were thought to have been wounded. The timing of the blast occurred during the area’s busiest part of the day. It is believed the suicide bomber was attempting to enter the Ministry but detonated his device when he was interdicted by security personnel. ISIS-K claimed responsibility for the attack on the group’s Telegram channel (Amaq news agency). No further information was available.
ORGANIZATION OF ISLAMIC COOPERATION ISSUES COMMUNIQUE CRITICAL OF TALIBAN REGIME – At the conclusion of an extraordinary session in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, the OIC issued a statement condemning the Taliban’s stance on women’s education as well as the ban on women working on humanitarian aid projects. The committee called for a delegation of scholars to visit Afghanistan and engage with the Taliban at the ‘highest levels’. The statement signaled a veiled threat to the Taliban by reminding the regime the OIC expects its member states to abide by the OIC Charter. A report from any potential visiting investigative teams is expected at the next regular session. A source in the Ministry of the Interior claimed the OIC’s rebuke was expected but that the advisors who surround the Supreme Leader flew into a rage and referred to the OIC committee members as heretics. The source also said there were orders from Kandahar to try and suppress reports from the OIC meeting in the press.
HERAT POWER OUTAGES – The Afghan national power company reported that power had been cut off in Herat due to technical issues with the Turkmenistan transmission lines. An early report had suggested that a terrorist attack had targeted a portion of the line, but was dismissed as rumor later in the day. It is not clear when power will be restored.
STORMS CLOSE SEVERAL ROADS, SALANG PASS CLOSED TO ALL TRAFFIC – Heavy snow blanketed a large portion of the country and Salang Pass authorities closed the tunnel to all traffic yesterday. Previously, it had only been closed to large trucks. There are multiple accounts of stranded motorists from several Provinces and rescue crews have been working for nearly 72 hours to try and save people from exposure. Local officials are pleading with citizens to avoid travel in the interim.
TURKISH OFFICIALS ANNOUNCE THEY WILL DEPORT 5,000 AFGHANS IN COMING DAYS – Turkey’s Directorate of Migration began 2023 with a round of deportations and the Turkish government said that it had rounded up approximately 2,000 undocumented migrants between 1-5 January. The Department stated they intend to deport 5,000 Afghans in the next five days. Turkey is thought to have deported 120,000 refugees over the course of 2022.
IN AN ABRUPT TURN, TALIBAN REVERSES DECREE TO CLOSE WOMEN-OWNED SHOPS IN BALKH & BAGHLAN PROVINCES – In a possible reaction to strong public outrage, the Taliban’s Vice and Virtue Ministry backed off of a plan to forcibly close women-owned businesses in Balkh and Baghlan Provinces. The spokesman for the Ministry said that the shops will be allowed to continue operating in their current locations but they would be forced to move to another location at some point in the future.
SECRETIVE MEETING BETWEEN US LAWMAKERS AND FORMER REGIME LEADERS IN TURKEY CONCLUDES – Apparently, several Republican congressmen (or, their staff members) concluded a three-day meeting with the Council of Resistance in Turkey. Reportedly, they discussed the proposed investigation into the withdrawal (US role), strategies to hold the Taliban accountable, and how to recognize the Resistance. We have yet to determine who may have met with the Council members and if the trip was officially approved.
NEXT 24 HOURS
SECURITY OPERATIONS PLANNED FOR KABUL – After the deadly bombing at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kabul, a source with the Taliban Police said they had a lead on two ISIS-K safe houses in Kabul and a raid was being planned for today. The source could not provide locations for either of the residences. As always, we urge at-risk Afghans to avoid concentrations of Taliban security vehicles and if a security presence is observed in an area where they normally do not congregate, please leave the area or take cover.
A dual UK-Iranian citizen was sentenced to death for alleged spying charges. Alireza Akbari was a former Deputy Minister of Defense.
Several hacking groups have warned that SecondEye software was being used to spy on Iranian citizens. The software is hidden in free VPN packages that are offered to Iranians.
UK authorities are investigating a package from Pakistan that was intended for an Iranian-owned business in the UK. The package reportedly contained a small amount of Uranium.
A Pakistani lawyer has been killed and 2 of his colleagues injured in an apparent attack along the Afghanistan border. No group has yet claimed credit for the attack.
A Pakistani Minister claims that 90% of the nearly $10 billion dollars in aid for the flooding are ‘loans’.
Citizens are worried about an announced increase in the cost of natural gas that is expected to be implemented in the next two weeks.
By Ehsanullah Amiri - Toronto Star
Two years before the Taliban returned to power, Shahabuddin Delawar, who was a senior member of the group’s negotiating team, declared at an “Intra-Afghan Conference” in Qatar: “Women will have the right to education. From Grade 1 to PhD.”
By Samuel Osborne - Sky News
A photo posted on social media showed at least nine people lying wounded or killed outside the ministry as security forces attended…
By Asia News
The ban on humanitarian work does not apply only to women, but could touch everyone, at least in a south-western…
By Gulf Today
Noura’s determination to play sports was so great that she defied her family’s opposition for…
By The Express Tribune
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has come down hard on the “imported government’s” ministers for…
By Ariana News
The contract was signed in the presence of Mullah Abdul Latif Mansour, Minister of Energy and Water Affairs of the Islamic Emirate, and…
INTERNATIONAL NEWS RELATING TO AFGHANISTAN
By AMU TV
The Executive Committee of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) said on Wednesday that the Taliban’s decision to close schools and universities for girls and ban women from…
In December, the Taliban banned women from working for aid agencies, and claimed they had broken dress codes by…
THE DAILY WTF
By Middle East Monitor
The British government has, so far, failed to deliver on its promise to resettle tens of thousands of vulnerable Afghans in the United Kingdom over…
Afghani to the Dollar: $1 – 89.88 AFN (as of 12 JAN 2023)