Taliban Declares Total Ban on Poppy Cultivation

The cultivation of poppy is now strictly prohibited in Afghanistan, per a recent decree from the Taliban. The move comes amid the Taliban’s bid for formal international recognition, in which cessation of the Afghan drug trade has been a major impediment to the international community. 

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FOCUS on Afghanistan: Women

Since the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and the Taliban’s takeover of the country, many questions have arisen regarding women’s rights in the country. The Taliban announced that they would lead an inclusive government where women would work “shoulder to shoulder” with men, promising to govern differently than before, says Al Jazeera.

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FOCUS on Afghanistan: The Taliban

On Tuesday, September 21, the Taliban requested to address world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly in New York and nominated Suhail Shaheen as Afghanistan’s UN ambassador, according to Reuters. This was one of many strategic efforts by the Taliban as it continues to woo world leaders in a bid for recognition as the official political authority in Afghanistan. Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates were the only countries that recognized the Taliban when it ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001.

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School of Diplomacy Hosts a Panel of Experts to Discuss the Future of Afghanistan

On the eve of the 20th anniversary of September 11, the School of Diplomacy hosted a panel discussing the implications of the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan. The panel featured Professor Sara Bjerg Moller, also the event’s organizer and moderator, Professor Joseph Huddleston former Afghan Ambassador Sayed Jalal Karim, and the U.S. Institute of Peace’s (USIP) Andrew Watkins.

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FOCUS on Afghanistan: The Return of Terrorism

The United States intervened in Afghanistan to hunt down the perpetrators of the September 11 terror attacks and deter another incident of such magnitude. Although this mission was successful at first, the Taliban’s return to power raises serious questions and concerns about the likelihood of a renewal of terrorism in Afghanistan and its implications for the American homeland. 

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What Are China’s True Intentions in Afghanistan?

The amicable, yet cautious, relationship between the Taliban and the Chinese Communist Party has been unmistakable in the weeks leading up to and following the contentious U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan. According to Reuters, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with the political chief of the Taliban, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, at the end of July. In this meeting, the two discussed Afghanistan’s sovereignty and independence, in addition to security and stability concerns within the nation.

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Afghanistan Faces Uncertain Future Amid Taliban Takeover

The United States has concluded its troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, marking the end of America’s longest war and a complete Taliban takeover of the country. CNN reports that the last U.S. military planes left Hamid Karzai International Airport on August 30, officially ending American intervention in the conflict.

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Inter-Afghan Peace Talks Kick Off with Distrust, Uncertainty, and Violence 

On September 12, peace talks between the government of Afghanistan and the Taliban officially began in Doha, Qatar. For two decades, the Taliban and the Afghan government have been at war, with civilian casualties over 31,000 according to a study by Brown University. The peace talks follow an agreement between the Taliban and the U.S., which brought an end to the 18 year long conflict, reports DW.

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