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Daily Evacuation Brief | March 17, 2023
LAST 24 HOURS
AFGHAN REFUGEES REPORTEDLY KILLED BY IRANIAN BORDER SECURITY FORCES IN BALUCHISTAN – Several reports indicate that as many as 11 Afghan citizens were killed five days ago in Sistan and Baluchistan Provinces. They were reputedly killed by Iranian Border Guards. Most of those killed were thought to be below the age of 20 and most accounts say they were all males. The bodies were passed to Taliban border forces at the Nimroz crossing. The Iranians claimed the men were killed when they attempted to cross the border illegally. It is not clear how many were killed in either Province. No further information was available.
NOWRUZ MAY BE CANCELED AGAIN – Reports from Balkh Province say that Taliban leaders have forbidden the Jahenda Bala Ceremony scheduled at the Blue Mosque in Mazar-i-Sharif for 21 March.
PAKISTAN HIGH COURT GRANTS 1 DAY REPRIEVE TO FORMER PM KHAN, ARREST SCHEDULED FOR FRIDAY – The Lahore High Court told Police to suspend the arrest operation until Friday after a plea by the former PM’s legal team had asked for the delay. While an order was also issued for Police and other National Security Forces personnel to withdraw from the Zaman Park neighborhood, many either ignored the order or had not received the edict. The area was mostly peaceful on Thursday but the PTI supporters remain in force and many are walking the streets carrying clubs. Rumors that many of the supporters had brought rifles and pistols to the defensive line continue to circulate. The supporters have brought in multiple shipping containers to restrict access to the former PM’s home. For his part, the former PM has signaled he would surrender to the court in Islamabad on 18 March. As the High Court in Lahore issued the warrant for his arrest, it is unlikely he will be allowed to make such a political move.
US GENERAL WARNS THAT ISIS IN AFGHANISTAN GROWING STRONGER, COULD FEASIBLY STRIKE THE US OR OTHERS IN 6 MONTHS – General Kurilla, Commander of US Central Command, informed US Senators that ISIS-K has rapidly gathered strength in Afghanistan and could strike the US or US citizens living abroad within the next six months. He admitted that US intelligence operations had been seriously degraded since the US pulled out and made a call for more resources to conduct intelligence-gathering activities by other means. He expressed his opinion that any forthcoming strikes would likely fall on US citizens and/or facilities overseas.
NEXT 24 HOURS
POSSIBLE RESUMPTION OF CLASHES BETWEEN POLICE AND PTI PARTY FAITHFUL AS ARREST OF FORMER PM EXPECTED – The tense standoff in Lahore continues to raise the specter of violence and Police are expected to make another attempt to arrest the former PM. Based on the number of PTI supporters who have remained in and around Zaman Park, it seems likely that any attempt will turn violent. We assess that any violence will be restricted to Lahore, but could spread to other cities as PTI seeks to make a statement. At-risk Afghans in Lahore are urged to avoid the Zaman Park area and the surrounding neighborhoods. A source has indicated that some PTI supporters were discussing burning down the buildings where the High Court sits in response to any Police operation and at-risk Afghans are encouraged to avoid any judicial facilities.
It was announced that a major component of the deal between Iran and Saudi Arabia included an agreement by Iran to stop supporting the Houthi rebels in Yemen.
A group of girls who had been filmed dancing to a popular song by Nigerian-US music stars were forced to make confessions. The video immediately went viral on multiple social media platforms. It is not clear if the young women have been released.
The European Union has called for a United Nations investigation into the poisoning of several hundred schoolgirls.
Pakistan Police have filed several additional charges against former Prime Minister Imran Khan yesterday. The charges came after the clashes on Tuesday and primarily accuse the former PM of inciting sedition.
Prime Minister Sharif sought to assure the international community of the security of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal. He claimed the system is foolproof.
Forced conversions for non-Muslims have reportedly risen over the last six months and religious minorities have lodged several freedom of religion cases in response.
Police say they have arrested 2 of those who were involved in the Police Line Mosque bombing case.
By Kazim Ehsan - Kabul Now
It is now evident that senior Taliban figures, expressing unease about the group’s direction, have been unable to influence decisions made by Mullah Hibatullah Akhundzada and those close to him. This demonstrates a significant shift in power towards their supreme leader. As a result, Kandahar has become the centre of power in the Taliban’s government and its power structure. And this means that power gained by the supreme leader results in power lost for others, particularly the group’s interior minister and the head of the Haqqani Network, Sirajuddin Haqqani. He was the first to go public with a speech on 11 February at a gathering in Khost province, which was seen as a direct challenge against the supreme leader, warning against the monopolisation of power within the group.
By Naseer Ahmad Salehi - TOLO News
The residents of Herat on Wednesday commemorated the 24th of Haut (March 15), which marks the 44th anniversary of the day when…
By Siyar Sirat - AMU TV
Addressing the opening session of the 49th session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of OIC member states in Mauritania, Hussein Brahim Taha said the Taliban continue to “demand that they be given…
By TOLO News
The former Minister of Finance, Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal, said that the Islamic Emirate’s policies on women’s education and work created an unfavorable environment and undermined Afghanistan’s…
By Nizamuddin Rezahi - Khaama Press
According to Iran International, Iranian border forces on Friday handed over the dead bodies of eleven Afghan citizens to the…
By 5 Pillars
Pakistan’s High Court has extended a pause in the police’s efforts to arrest former Prime Minister Imran Khan who was due to…
INTERNATIONAL NEWS RELATING TO AFGHANISTAN
By The Peninsula Qatar
United Nations: The Security Council on Thursday renewed the United Nations Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) for another year, while also asking for…
By Svetlana Shkolnikova - Stripes
The Islamic State network in Afghanistan will be able to attack American or Western interests outside the country in…
THE DAILY WTF
By Pajhwok Afghan News
Deputy Prime Minister Maulvi Abdul Kabir says creating a secure environment is a responsibility of the…
Afghani to the Dollar: $1 – 87.70 AFN (as of 17 MAR 2023)