New wave of assassinations silencing voices in Afghanistan
06 February 2021 | 12:16 pm
Journalists, religious scholars, activists and judges have all been targeted in a recent wave of political assassinations that has spread panic across Afghanistan and forced many into hiding -- with some even fleeing the country. The killings have increased since peace talks were launched last year between the warring Afghan government and the Taliban -- the latest attempt to end decades of conflict.
With the last remaining foreign soldiers preparing to leave Afghan soil, many Germans are questioning whether the mission was justified. DW looks back on Germany's long Bundeswehr mission in Afghanistan following the September 11 attacks in the US.
The UN Security Council renewed the assistance mission to Afghanistan for another year. Russia abstained from voting, calling out the mission's renewal for "stubborn ignorance of the new realities" of Taliban rule.
Beijing's top diplomat Wang Yi has met with top Taliban leaders in Kabul for the first time since the fundamentalist group took power in August. Wang also visited India amid a controversy regarding Kashmir.
The Taliban is cracking down on foreign media in Afghanistan. DW programming rebroadcast by partners in Pashto and Dari will be banned. The BBC said that bulletins in Pashto, Persian and Uzbek have been removed.
Beijing and Moscow have agreed to broaden bilateral cooperation and speak on global affairs "with a united voice," Russia said after talks between both countries' foreign ministers.
A UN donor conference seeking to raise $4.4 billion says the funds will go directly to aid agencies and not through the Taliban. Donors voiced concerns after the Taliban banned girls from returning to secondary schools.
The Taliban are taking steps to halt Afghanistan's opium trade even as the country's economy crumbles. It is unclear how the Taliban government plans to replace this illicit source of income for millions of farmers.
A group of children was playing in a field in Herat when two bombs went off. In a separate incident in southern Afghanistan, at least five children were killed when they found an unexploded shell.
Islamabad has issued a warning to Afghanistan's Taliban leadership, accusing it of giving shelter to militants. In turn, the Taliban claim Pakistani bombings recently killed dozens of civilians on Afghan soil.
Police say scores were injured when a bomb ripped through a mosque in Kunduz during Friday prayers. The attack came as an "Islamic State" affiliate claimed responsibility for several earlier bomb attacks.
The Taliban have further curbed women's rights with their latest veil compulsion decree. Afghanistan's civil society faces an uphill task to challenge the group without adequate support from the international community.
The "Maghreb-Orient des livres" book festival takes place in Paris this weekend, focusing on literature from north Africa and the Middle East. One of those taking part is Jérémie Dres, the author of the graphic novel "The day I met bin Laden". It features the story of two young French men who travelled from France to Afghanistan in the spring of 2001, just months before the 9/11 terror attacks. The pair then found themselves trapped in Afghanistan and were later sent to the Guantanamo Bay detention camp. The author joined us for Perspective to tell us more.
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