Mapping of Taliban progress in Afghanistan


Taliban with captured vehicle

Taliban with captured vehicle

The resurrected Taliban has occupied more territory in Afghanistan in the last two months since its expulsion from power in 2001.

For the past two decades, Afghanistan’s control map has been a constantly changing canvas. Here we will look at the fluctuating situation of who controls which area.

The Taliban have been bolded by the withdrawal of US troops in recent weeks and appear to have retaken many districts from government troops.

According to a survey from BBC Afghanistan services, militants now have a strong presence across the country, including northern, northeastern and central parts such as Ghazni and Maidanwaldak. They are also close to major cities such as Kunduz, Herat, Kandahar and Lashkar Gah.

Afghanistan control map

Afghanistan control map

Management means a district where the administrative center, police headquarters, and all other government agencies are controlled by the Taliban.

The US military and its NATO and regional allies expelled the Taliban from power in November 2001. The group contained Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaeda figures associated with the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.

However, despite its ongoing international presence in the region, billions of dollars in support and training for Afghan government forces, the Taliban have reorganized and gradually regained power in more remote areas.

Their main influential areas were around traditional bases in the southern and southwestern states of northern Helmand, Kandahar, Uruzgan and Zabourg. But also in the hills of southern Fariyab in the northwest and the mountains of Badafshan in the northeast.

A 2017 BBC survey showed that the Taliban had full control over many districts. However, research also shows that they are active in many other parts of the country, increasing weekly or monthly attacks in some areas, significantly higher than previously estimated. Suggests.

Map showing the full Taliban or government-controlled area of ​​017

Map showing the full Taliban or government-controlled area of ​​017

About 15 million people, half of the population, were reported to live in areas controlled by the Taliban, or in areas where the Taliban were openly present and regularly attacking government forces.

Does the Taliban hold its position?

They now dominate more territory since 2001, but the situation on the ground is in flux.

The government was forced to abandon some district administration centers that could not withstand the pressure from the Taliban. Others were forcibly taken.

If the government was able to reorganize its troops or recruit local militias, it regained some of the lost areas-or fighting continues in those areas. Most U.S. forces left in June, but only a handful remain in Kabul, and the U.S. Air Force has bombed the Taliban position in the past few days.

Map showing changes in district management

Map showing changes in district management

Afghan government forces hold cities and districts primarily in plains or river valleys. This is also where most of the population lives.

The areas with the strongest Taliban are sparsely populated, with less than 50 people per square kilometer in many areas.

Population by state

Population by state

The government said it sent reinforcements to all major cities under the threat of the Taliban and imposed a one-month curfew in almost every country to prevent the Taliban from invading cities. increase.

They appear to be close to centers such as Herat and Kandahar, but the Taliban have yet to catch them. But the territorial benefits they make strengthen their position in the negotiations and generate income in the form of taxes and loot.

A record number of civilians were killed as a result of the conflict earlier this year. The United Nations has accused most of the deaths of 1,600 civilians by the Taliban and other rebels. The fighting also forced many to flee their homes-approximately 300,000 people have been evacuated since the beginning of the year. UNHCR states that the Taliban’s occupation of large areas of rural areas will bring a new wave of internally displaced persons across the provinces of Badakhshan, Kunduz, Balkh, Baghlan and Takar.

Some flee to villages and neighboring areas and return home a few days later, while others have been evacuated for some time. AFP news outlets report that the Taliban attack forced Afghan refugees and government troops to cross the border into Tajikistan.

People forced to leave home wait for border crossings to open

People forced to leave home wait for border crossings to open

The Taliban are also reported to control many major border crossings, including Spinboldak, the main gateway to Pakistan.

Map showing border crossings and checkpoints taken by the Taliban

Map showing border crossings and checkpoints taken by the Taliban

Tariffs on goods entering through the intersections they control are currently being collected by the Taliban, but the exact amount is unknown due to reduced trade volumes as a result of the fighting.

But Islam Qala, on the border with Iran, was able to generate more than $ 20 million a month, for example.

The turmoil in the flow of imports and exports has affected the prices of market essentials, especially fuel and food.

Additional reporting by BBC Afghanistan Services

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