Conflict Alerts

Conflict Alerts # 44, 11 March 2020

Two Presidents in Afghanistan
Sukanya Bali

In the news

On 9 March Afghanistan's President, Ashraf Ghani took oath for his second term. Simultaneously, Abdullah Abdullah former chief executive also took an oath, to form a parallel government. The US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad made several efforts over the week to negotiate between the two political leaders. 

The UN special representative said, "Terribly sad and dangerous. Two parallel ceremonies. This simply cannot continue. Strong unity is required, not destructive rivalries". The swearing ceremony of Afghan President, Ashraf Ghani was attended by international representatives including foreign diplomats including Zalmay Khalilzad, the US and NATO force commander. 

During the ceremony, a blast was reported, which was later claimed by the Islamic State. 

Issues at large

The Afghan election took place on 28 September, and the results were announced in February. In the final vote count, Ashraf Ghani attained 50.62 per cent of votes whereas Abdullah Abdullah secured 39.52 per cent. Abdullah Abdullah has disregarded the result and declared himself the winner saying that he would 'form his government'.

The election result is similar to that of 2014 when both the leaders Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah was brought to negotiate over a power-sharing agreement by the US and the creation of a new position of 'Chief Executive' for Abdullah Abdullah. However, this time the US has failed to bring both together, which is likely to further delay the Intra-Afghan peace process. 

The election results were announced just before the signing of the US-Taliban peace deal. Ashraf Ghani was declared a winner and Abdullah Abdullah announced for setting a parallel government in Afghanistan. The US rebuked the formation of the parallel government and the US secretary of state-issued asserting Washington's stand. 

The US-Taliban deal went through several rounds of negotiations since 2018. Finally, the deal was signed between the US, Taliban, and Afghan government after a weeklong reduction in violence on 29 February in Doha. 

The deal seeks to address four major aspects. First, withdrawal of all the US and NATO troops from Afghanistan in a timeline of 14 months. Second, a permanent ceasefire and a power-sharing agreement between the Taliban and the Afghan government. Third, an intra-Afghan dialogue on 10 March. Fourth, guarantees from the Taliban of not letting anyone use Afghan soil as the launchpad of attacks against the US. 

A large number of women have come forward showing 'discontent' with the deal and called the deal, 'biased' in nature. In Afghanistan, women gained equal rights in the 2004 constitution. 

In perspective

First, the two ceremonies and the parallel governments will adversely affect the peace process which the world is looking for in Afghanistan. The dispute between the two leaders will bring in new internal crisis, which will further lead to instability in the country. 

Second, the Taliban, which considered the Afghan government as 'puppet' government is not likely to hold negotiations with the disputed government. They already condemn the government, and hence bringing an inclusive team to the negotiating table will be a significant challenge in the coming week for Afghanistan. This will delay the start of intra-Afghan talks. 

Third, the political crisis in the country will further have economic repercussions which may increase poverty, unemployment and an uncertain future.

Fourth, women of Afghanistan believe that the deal would affect the long-lost freedom they had once achieved. In the name of bringing peace to Afghanistan, the nation may lose its integrity and security of its women.

May 2021 | Conflict Alert # 374
Yemen: The Battle for Marib rages on

April 2021 | Conflict Alert # 371
Pakistan: Meetings with Afghan leaders
April 2021 | Conflict Alert # 369
Israel-Syria: Continuing Missile Strikes
April 2021 | Conflict Alert # 362
Iran: Another act of

April 2021 | Conflict Alert # 358
India: Another Maoist attack in Chhattisgarh

April 2021 | Conflict Alert # 356
Global Gender Gap Report 2021: Main Takeaways
March 2021 | Conflict Alert # 353
Niger: 137 massacred in the latest attack by gunmen
March 2021 | Conflict Alert # 351
Yemen: Saudi Arabia announces ceasefire

March 2021 | Conflict Alert # 347
Australia: Women fight against sexual violence 

March 2021 | Conflict Alert # 345
The US: The George Floyd trial begins
March 2021 | Conflict Alert # 340
Syria: UN report calls for a complete ceasefire
February 2021 | Conflict Alert # 333
South Korea: The 'Comfort Women' issue returns to haunt
January 2021 | Conflict Alert # 222
Russia: Pro-Navalny protests turn anti-government 
January 2021 | Conflict Alert # 220
COVID-19: The Vaccine Wars
December 2020 | Conflict Alert # 200
India: Farmers' protests intensify as deadlock persists
November 2020 | Conflict Alert # 191
Pakistan: Anti-French protests called off

October 2020 | Conflict Alert # 174
Bangladesh: Protests intensify against sexual violence
October 2020 | Conflict Alert # 167
India crosses 6 million-mark in COVID-19 cases

September 2020 | Conflict Alert # 166
Pakistan: The persisting polio problem
September 2020 | Conflict Alert # 156
Pakistan: Targeted Violence continues in Waziristan
September 2020 | Conflict Alert # 154
The anti-Racist Protests in the US: Between
August 2020 | Conflict Alert # 148
Israel and UAE normalize relations
August 2020 | Conflict Alert # 146
Bolivia: Protests against the Election postponement
August 2020 | Conflict Alert # 138
In Iraq, the protestors return to the streets 

July 2020 | Conflict Alert # 118
J&K: Geelani's Exit and Continuing Violence

June 2020 | Conflict Alert # 105
Black Lives Matter brings the US to its knees
May 2020 | Conflict Alert # 86
Libya: Khalifa Haftar announces ceasefire 

May 2020 | Conflict Alert # 81
India: The surge in violence in J&K
April 2020 | Conflict Alert # 71
Afghanistan: 300 Taliban prisoners released
April 2020 | Conflict Alert # 67
Syria: New UN Report on Idlib
April 2020 | Conflict Alert # 64
A lethal impact on the Refugee/Migrant Camps 
April 2020 | Conflict Alert # 63
Indigenous Communities battle a complete wipeout 
March 2020 | Conflict Alert # 51
Coronavirus & China: Fall in numbers 
March 2020 | Conflict Alert # 47
Coronavirus & Nepal: In the second stage, cancels
March 2020 | Conflict Alert # 42
'Aurat March': A New beginning across Pakistan 
March 2020 | Conflict Alert # 38
Sri Lanka withdraws from 30/1 Geneva Resolution
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 35
A ceasefire between Israel, Islamic Jihad in Gaza
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 34
Libya: rivals withdraw from Geneva peace talks
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 33
India: Violence in Delhi

February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 32
Afghanistan: Seven Days of Peace
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 31
Climate Change Fallouts: Impacts the Bird population
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 28
Pakistan: Court convicts LeT founder Hafiz Saeed
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 27
Pakistan: Suicide terrorism returns to haunt Quetta
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 26
Afghanistan: The US-Taliban Seven Day Deal
February 2020 | Conflict Alert # 24
Israel: Violence in post  Trump-deal
January 2020 | Conflict Alert # 20
Kenya: Al Shabab and a week of killings
December 2019 | Conflict Alert # 19
Citizenship Amendment Bill:2019
November 2019 | Conflict Alert # 18
Lebanon: PM Hariri quits, but protests continue 
October 2019 | Conflict Alert # 16
Bolivian unrest
October 2019 | Conflict Alert # 15
Hundreds protest in Haiti
October 2019 | Conflict Alert # 14
Protests rock Chile
October 2019 | Conflict Alert # 13
Hong Kong Violence: A divide within

October 2019 | Conflict Alert # 12
Spain: The trouble in Catalonia
October 2019 | Conflict Alert # 11
Turkey's Offensive in Syria
August 2019 | Conflict Alert # 9
Africa to be Polio Free

August 2019 | Conflict Alert # 7
Myanmar: Teenage girls traded as brides to China
August 2019 | Conflict Alert # 6
Moscow Protests: Thousands rally in Moscow
August 2019 | Conflict Alert # 3
Jordan Restores diplomatic ties with Qatar