The US and Afghanistan: can’t win the war, can’t stop it, can’t...

As civilian casualties rise, and with no sign that recent American and Nato reinforcements are making a difference, an already dire security situation is growing more complex. Part of the problem is that Islamic State and the... More

Taliban cannot win on the Battlefield: Pentagon

Senior officials from US Defense Department have reiterated that the Taliban cannot win on the battlefield in Afghanistan, adding that putting more pressure on the militants is to get the group to join the peace talks with... More

US Senator releases report on Pentagon mismanagement of Afghanistan program

A new report details chronic mismanagement by the Pentagon of a program designed to provide counterinsurgency intelligence experts to train members of the Afghan National Security Forces, US Senator Claire McCaskill's office said in a press release... More

Taliban threatens to attack US forces in Afghanistan

Taliban has announced its plans to launch the so-called "spring offensive," partly amid Donald Trump's decision to increase the US presence in the war-torn Central Asian country. Taliban representatives made a statement saying that they will focus on... More

Daesh fighters repositioned from Syria, Iraq to Afghanistan

Mohammad Alam Ezadyar, the first deputy speaker of Afghanistan’s Upper House of Parliament told Sputnik about Kabul’s desire to hold a permanent seat in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the US military presence in the country, and shared... More

India to give Afghanistan weapon for counter-insurgency ops

In a major push to spread its influence in the neighborhood, India has decided to supply weapons and equipment to friendly foreign countries, including Afghanistan. And, for the first time, India is likely to provide Afghanistan with troop... More

ISIS beheads three brothers in Afghanistan

Militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terror group have beheaded three brothers, all working in the medical profession, in Afghanistan's eastern province of Nangarhar, an official said on Monday (April 23). Attaullah Khogyani, spokesman... More

Grief turns to anger over Kabul suicide attack

Grieving Afghans buried their loved ones in Kabul on Monday (April 23) amid growing anger over a suicide attack on a voter registration centre in the city that killed at least 57 people including children and wounded... More

Blast at election center in Afghan capital kills 57

A suicide bomber blew himself up outside a voter registration center in the Afghan capital Kabul on Sunday (Apr 22), killing at least 57 people and injuring more than 100, in the most serious attack yet on... More

Afghanistan-Turkey to hold trade talks

A joint economic forum between Afghanistan and Turkey is being planned, possibly for May, said Turkey’s Deputy Minister of Economy, Fatih Metin. According to him, the plan is for discussions to be held on the development of commercial,... More

NSA asks China to help establish a ‘Mountain Brigade’

Afghanistan’s National Security Adviser (NSA) Haneef Atmar has wrapped up a three-day official visit to China where he held talks with a number of high-ranking officials, including China’s Vice President Wang Qishan. Atmar also met with Li Zuocheng,... More

Afghans interested more than ever to learn Chinese

The number of Chinese language fans has increased unprecedently as university students say it will boost relations between Afghanistan and China. Youths from Kabul learn the language in private schools and meanwhile students learn it in the Chinese... More

US military focus shifts from Iraq, Syria to Afghanistan, bombing report shows

The United States dropped more weapons on Afghanistan in March 2018 than it did in Syria and Iraq that month, a first since the commencement of the 2014 US anti-Daesh campaign in Iraq and Syria, Operation Inherent... More

Afghanistan’s 30-year pipe dream could bring power, industry

Afghanistan is pressing ahead with plans to turn natural gas from an $8-billion pipeline into economic development, with projects ranging from fertilizer plants to power generation, but first it needs to start construction. The TAPI pipeline - named... More

China factor in Afghan peace

The Chinese Vice Foreign Minister, Li Baodong, speaking at Tashkent Peace Conference on Afghanistan, extended China’s support to the inclusive political reconciliation process in Afghanistan. He said China saw Afghanistan as an important partner under its Belt... More

Taliban turns down Afghan President’s offer to take part in elections

The Taliban radical movement has rejected the offer of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to participate in Afghanistan’s parliamentary and local elections, TOLO broadcaster reported. The Taliban  slammed the upcoming elections, saying that only those who are approved by... More

Border clashes threaten Pak-Afghan thaw

Pakistan and Afghanistan began efforts to defuse tensions after cross-border skirmishes on Sunday left at least 2 Pakistani paramilitary soldiers martyred and many others wounded. The incident – happened along the border with Afghanistan in Kurram Agency –... More

Pakistani soldiers killed in fire from Afghanistan

Two Pakistani soldiers were killed in cross-border fire from Afghanistan while working on a fence intended to cover nearly all of the disputed 2,500km border separating the countries, the Pakistani military said on Sunday (Apr 15). Though security... More

Afghans register to vote in long-delayed elections amid violence

Afghanistan over the weekend began registering voters across the war-torn country as it seeks to ensure that long-delayed legislative elections in October are seen as credible and fraud-free. Over the next two months, authorities hope to register as... More

Parliamentary polls might be delayed: Afghanistan’s new CEC

A day after he was appointed as the new head of the Independent Election Commission, Gula Jan Abdulbadi Sayyad said there is the possibility parliamentary and district council elections could be delayed for a few months. He said... More

UNAMA again records high levels of civilian casualties in Afghanistan

The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) on Thursday reported that during the first three months of 2018, anti-government elements caused 1,500 civilian casualties - a six percent increase from the same period last year. Consistent with trends... More


Regulators and conflict of interest

A governmental body created by a legislature to implement and enforce specific laws, a "Regulatory Agency" or a "Regulator" would usually have quasi-legislative functions, executive functions, and judicial functions. Many laws govern social and economic matters, such as income tax, environmental laws, occupational health and safety laws, real estate law, employment laws, etc. A regulatory agency serves two primary functions in govt: implement the laws and enforce the same. Regulations... More

Is Bangladesh an online state?

Bangladesh is an online state with an incredibly high number of virtual citizens. Few can match them in enthusiasm, participation and enjoyment of what the online world offers, good or bad. Much great stuff happens on the net but so does nasty stuff. It’s also a great producer of cultural and otherwise, not to mention, political ones. The recent spate of actions against online content considered “harmful” have spiked, which,... More

How China might undo Saudi plans for Iran?

The recent Saudi bid to increase its economic and political influence in South Asia (Pakistan and India) is, as I pointed out in my previous stories for SAM, largely informed not just by the imperative of a Saudi economic expansion across Asia and avoid economic doom, but also by the objective of snatching Iran’s share of oil market in this part of the world. This is partly one reason... More

Pakistan receives warning from Iran not to join Saudi proxy war

Pakistan has received a stern warning from Iran's Major-General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' Qods Force and other senior in the aftermath of the February 13, 2019 attack on their forces by Iranian Baluch militants in the country's restive Sistan and Baluchistan province bordering Pakistan. The new tone from Tehran is a response to Pakistan's recent tilt back toward Saudi Arabia since Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran... More

‘Syndrome 2020’ unleashes a new bid to change the constitution

Myanmar’spro-democracy forces have launched a new bid to change the country’s constitution. With some 18 months left before the 2020 elections, the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) has initiated a process in parliament it hopes will amend the military-drafted constitution and give the party an important campaigning issue. It is the latest evidence that the country has been plunged into “Syndrome 2020” in the lead up to the... More



The fourth summit of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), held in Kathmandu on August 30 and 31, was “not fruitful” because of the inherent “weakness” of the regional inter-state institution,... More