(New York, N.Y.) — Today, on the first anniversary of the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan, CEP Senior Director and former coordinator of the ISIL (Da’esh), al-Qaida and Taliban Sanctions Monitoring Team of the U.N. Security Council Dr. Hans-Jakob Schindler observed that Afghanistan has been set back nearly two decades. While maintaining its symbiotic relationship with al-Qaeda, the Taliban appointed some members of the violent extremist movement to the same or similar positions of power that they held until the international community deposed the Taliban regime in 2001.
When appointing individuals to ministries and regime organizations, the Taliban included a number of previously designated individuals as well as former detainees of Guantánamo Bay Naval Base to senior cabinet positions, painting a grim picture of what the future regime would look like as a breeding ground for Islamist terrorism.
To read CEP’s resource Taliban, please click here.
“Since the Taliban’s takeover of the Afghan government last August, the new regime has presented us with the same set of problems we faced in the 1990s, namely their support for and harboring of terrorists, highlighted by the recent U.S. drone strike of al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri in Kabul; the significant and continuous deterioration of human rights in-country, in particular the rights of women; and the flow of illegal drugs, now including methamphetamine, economically benefitting its extremist regime,” stated Dr. Schindler.
“The Taliban have made clear over the past year that, despite any claims of new moderation, they continue to support terrorism, violate human rights, and remain the largest global drug cartel. While the same problems of 20 years ago have reappeared, they have also been compounded by the fact that the Taliban now has an ideological terrorist competitor in the country, ISIS Khorasan Province, creating an even larger long-term counterterrorism challenge.
“The international community must respond, primarily through the reevaluation of sanctions against the Taliban with the aim to again increase their effectiveness without unduly inhibiting humanitarian action, recognition of its thriving terrorist environment, and disruption of its illegal drug trade to staunch the economic support it provides the regime. Without ensuring that the Taliban is held to account for its terrorism, heinous human rights record, participation in an illegal drug trade impacting the public health in most parts of the globe, and expansion of terrorist capabilities under their protection that allows global terror networks once again to use Afghanistan as a base for expansion, Afghan citizens and peoples across the globe will only continue to suffer.”
To read CEP’s resource Afghanistan: Extremism & Terrorism, please click here.
To read CEP’s resource Al-Qaeda, please click here.
To read CEP’s resource ISIS, please click here.