Afghanistan’s Taliban, determined to capture a major city in the country, have advanced on Kunduz, in the northeast. The Taliban oppose any public role for women in Afghan society and have targeted women’s organizations in Kunduz. But a local journalist and mother, Sediqa Sherzai, for years has run Radio Roshani, a station that broadcasts programs for women’s rights and democracy.

Related Publications

A Year into Taliban Rule, Afghans Face Spiraling Economic, Humanitarian Crises

A Year into Taliban Rule, Afghans Face Spiraling Economic, Humanitarian Crises

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

By: Dhabie Brown;  Yasmin Faruki;  Ashley Igwe;  Allyson Neville;  Becky Roby

The Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan last year — followed by economic sanctions and other restrictions from the international community — precipitated a dire humanitarian crisis. Afghan women and children, particularly girls, have been hit the hardest. After two decades of hard-won gains, Afghan women have seen their rights evaporate before their eyes and young girls’ dreams for their futures have been squashed. Meanwhile, the country’s economic crisis has left nearly the entire population in hunger, with limited access to health care and other basic needs.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

EconomicsHuman Rights

One Year Later: Taliban Reprise Repressive Rule, but Struggle to Build a State

One Year Later: Taliban Reprise Repressive Rule, but Struggle to Build a State

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

By: Andrew Watkins

When the Taliban swept into power last August, many expected they would reprise the draconian governance of their 1990s emirate. Despite pledges of moderation and reform from some Taliban factions, one year later those predictions have largely turned out to be prescient. The group has yet to establish a formal governance structure, with the interim cabinet appointed early in their tenure still intact. But the Taliban have swiftly reinstated many of their harshest policies, pushing women out of public life and brooking no dissent. USIP’s Andrew Watkins explains how the Taliban government functions, who’s really in charge and how the Taliban have dealt with challenges to their authority.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & Governance

Demands for Prompt Return of Afghan Central Bank Reserves Miss the Full Picture

Demands for Prompt Return of Afghan Central Bank Reserves Miss the Full Picture

Monday, August 15, 2022

By: William Byrd, Ph.D.

On August 10, a group of more than 70 international economists sent an open letter to U.S. President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen urging the U.S. administration to promptly return more than $7 billion of Afghanistan’s foreign exchange reserves, held at the New York Federal Reserve Bank, to Afghanistan’s central bank (Da Afghanistan Bank; DAB). The letter followed similar pleas by U.N. officials and others. However, following the killing of al-Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahiri in a U.S. drone strike in Kabul on July 31, the administration announced it will not release any of the reserves for recapitalization of DAB. The economists’ letter, though well-intentioned like other requests to return the reserves to DAB, does not take into account the very real constraints imposed by the U.S. legal system and judicial proceedings, as well as serious problems at DAB.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

EconomicsGlobal Policy

View All Publications