Select a country in the map above or list below to find relevant staff, as well as publications, projects, news or events relevant to that region.


Gunhild Hoogensen Gjørv

Gunhild Hoogensen Gjørv

Research Professor

Kai Eide

Kai Eide

PRIO Visiting Fellow at Brookings

Kaja Borchgrevink

Kaja Borchgrevink

Senior Researcher

Kristian Berg Harpviken

Kristian Berg Harpviken

Research Professor

Lina Elter

Lina Elter

Master's Student

Pavel K. Baev

Pavel K. Baev

Research Professor

Rahmat Hashemi

Rahmat Hashemi

Doctoral Researcher

Scott Gates

Scott Gates

Research Professor

Scott Worden

Scott Worden

Senior Rule of Law Adviser, Rule of Law Center of Innovation, United States Institute of Peace (USIP)

Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh

Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh

Associate Researcher

William Taylor

William Taylor

Vice President, Center for Post-Conflict Peace and Stability Operations, United States Institute of Peace (USIP)


Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Brekke, Jan-Paul; Simon Roland Birkvad & Marta Bivand Erdal (2020) Losing the Right to Stay: Revocation of Refugee Permits in Norway, Journal of Refugee Studies 34(2): 1637–1656.
Erdal, Marta Bivand & Ceri Oeppen (2017) Forced to leave? The discursive and analytical significance of describing migration as forced and voluntary, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies. DOI: 10.1080/1369183X.2017.1384149.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg (2014) Split Return: Transnational Household Strategies in Afghan Repatriation, International Migration 52(6): 57–71.
Borchgrevink, Kaja (2013) Transnational Links of Afghan Madrasas: Implications for the Reform of Religious Education, Prospects: Quarterly Review of Comparative Education 43(1): 69–84.
Baev, Pavel K. (2012) How Afghanistan Was Broken: The Disaster of the Soviet Intervention, International Area Studies Review 15(3): 249–262.
Olsson, Louise & Anna K. Jarstad (2012) Hybrid Peace Ownership in Afghanistan: International Perspectives of Who Owns What and When, Global Governance 18(1).
Simonsen, Sven Gunnar (2009) Leaving Security in Safe Hands: Identity, Legitimacy and Cohesion in the New Afghan and Iraqi Armies, Third World Quarterly 30(8): 1–19.
Suhrke, Astri & Kaja Borchgrevink (2009) Negotiating Justice Sector Reform in Afghanistan, Crime, Law and Social Change 51(2): 211–130.
Simonsen, Sven Gunnar (2004) Ethnicizing Afghanistan? Inclusion and Exclusion in Post-Bonn Institution-Building, Third World Quarterly 25(4): 707–729.


Harpviken, Kristian Berg & Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh (2016) A Rock Between Hard Places: Afghanistan as an Arena of Regional Insecurity. New York: Oxford University Press.

Book Chapter

Strand, Arne (2022) Truth and Logic for a More Peaceful World: Kristian Berg Harpviken, in Stein Tønnesson, ed., Lives in Peace Research: the Oslo Stories. Singapore: Springer (223–254).
Roy, Kaushik (2019) Afghanistan's Foreign Policy, in Takashi Inoguchi, ed., The SAGE Handbook of Asian Foreign Policy. London: SAGE Publications Ltd (872–892).
Erdal, Marta Bivand & Ceri Oeppen (2017) Forced to return? Agency and the role of post-return mobility for wellbeing among returnees to Afghanistan, Pakistan and Poland, in Vathi, Zana; & Russell King, eds, Return Migration and Wellbeing: Discourses, Policy-Making and Outcomes for Migrants and Their Families. Abingdon: Routledge (39–55).
Baev, Pavel K. (2015) The Conflict of War and Politics in the Soviet Intervention into Afghanistan, 1979-1989, in Gates, Scott; & Kaushik Roy, eds, War and State-Building In Afghanistan: Historical and Modern Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury (113–130).
Gates, Scott & Kaushik Roy (2015) lntroduction: Armies, Warfare and the State in Afghanistan from Pre-modern Times to the Present Era, in Gates, Scott; & Kaushik Roy, eds, War and State-Building In Afghanistan: Historical and Modern Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury (1–20).
Gates, Scott; Kaushik Roy; Marianne Dahl & Håvard Mokleiv Nygård (2015) Continuity and Change in Asymmetric Warfare in Afghanistan: From the Mughals to the Americans, in Gates, Scott; & Kaushik Roy, eds, War and State-Building in Afghanistan: Historical and Modern Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury (21–42).
Roy, Kaushik (2015) Great Mughals, Warfare and COIN in Afghanistan, 1520-1707, in Gates, Scott; & Kaushik Roy, eds, War and State-Building in Afghanistan: Historical and Modern Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury (43–78).
Harpviken, Kristian Berg (2015) Heart or Periphery? Afghanistan's Complex Neighbourhood Relations, in Gates, Scott; & Kaushik Roy, eds, War and State-Building in Afghanistan: Historical and Modern Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury (245–279).
Roy, Kaushik (2014) British-India and Afghanistan: 1707–1842, in Kaushik Roy, ed., Chinese and Indian Warfare – from the Classical Age to 1870. London: Routledge (91–120).
Olsson, Louise & Anna K. Jarstad (2011) Local ownership of peace. Hobbes, Rousseau and international support for state-building in Afghanistan, in Fjelde, Hanne; & Kristine Höglund, eds, Building peace, creating conflict? Conflictual dimensions of local and international peace-building. Lund: Nordic Academic Press.
Borchgrevink, Kaja & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2010) Afghanistan: Civil Society Between Modernity and Tradition, in Thania Paffenholz , ed., Civil Society and Peacebuilding: a Critical Assessment. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner (235–257).

Edited Volume

Gates, Scott; & Kaushik Roy, eds, (2015) War and State-Building in Afghanistan: Historical and Modern Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury. Bloomsbury Studies in Military History.
Gates, Scott; & Kaushik Roy, eds, (2014) War and State-Building in Afghanistan: Historical and Modern Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Bloomsbury Studies in Military History.

Non-refereed Journal Article

Popular Article

Olsson, Louise & Madhav Joshi (2021) What's Next for Women's Rights in Afghanistan?, Political Violence @ a Glance, 13 September.
Baev, Pavel K. (2021) Russia takes measure of how Afghanistan resonates in the Middle East, Eurasia Daily Monitor, 7 September.
Carrozza, Ilaria & Henrik Buljo Anstorp (2021) Kommer Kina til å gjenoppbygge Afghanistan, Irak og Syria? [Will China rebuild Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria?], Aftenposten, 4 September.
Baev, Pavel K. (2021) Russia and America's overlapping legacies in Afghanistan, Order from Chaos, 18 August.
Toft, Monica Duffy (2020) How the U.S. Should Leave Afghanistan, The National Interest, 5 December.
Miklian, Jason; Kristian Hoelscher & Håvard Mokleiv Nygård (2016) What makes a country dangerous for aid workers?, The Guardian, 18 January.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg & Kaja Borchgrevink (2009) A Muted Voice? Religious Actors and Civil Society in Post-2001 Afghanistan, Afghanistan Info, 15 March.
Bakkevig, Trond & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2001) Forsoning i Afghanistan [Reconciliation in Afghanistan], Dagbladet, 9 December.

PRIO Report

Carling, Jørgen; Marta Bolognani; Marta Bivand Erdal; Rojan Tordhol Ezzati; Ceri Oeppen; Erlend Paasche; Silje Vatne Pettersen; & Tove Heggli Sagmo (2015) Possibilities and Realities of Return Migration, PRIO Project Summary. Oslo: PRIO.

PRIO Policy Brief

Gjerløw, Haakon & Solomon Negash (2021) The State of Democracy among Norway’s Partner Countries in Development Policy, Conflict Trends, 7. Oslo: PRIO.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg (2021) The Foreign Policy of the Afghan Taliban, PRIO Policy Brief, 2. Oslo: PRIO.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg (2021) Afghan Peace Will Require a Neighborly Concert, PRIO Policy Brief, 1. Oslo: PRIO.
Rustad, Siri Aas; Håvard Mokleiv Nygård & Fredrik Methi (2020) Are the Coronavirus Ceasefires Working?, Conflict Trends, 4. Oslo: PRIO.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg (2016) ‘Voting with Their Feet’ or Returning to Fight?, PRIO Policy Brief, 9. Oslo: PRIO.
Brattvoll, Joakim (2016) Uzbekistan’s ambiguous policies on Afghanistan, PRIO Policy Brief, 1. Oslo: PRIO.
Brattvoll, Joakim (2016) Is Russia Back in Afghanistan?, PRIO Policy Brief, 4. Oslo: PRIO.
Tariq, Mohammed Osman; Kaja Borchgrevink & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2011) Building Trust and Institutions - Religious Institution-Building in Afghanistan: An Exploration, PRIO Policy Brief, 2. Oslo: PRIO.
Suhrke, Astri (2011) Disjointed Incrementalism: NATO in Afghanistan, PRIO Policy Brief, 3. Oslo: PRIO.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg (2011) Power Prevails: The Failure of Whole-of-Government Approaches in Afghanistan, PRIO Policy Brief, 4. Oslo: PRIO.
Borchgrevink, Kaja & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2010) Teaching Religion, Taming Rebellion: Religious Education Reform in Afghanistan, PRIO Policy Brief, 7. Oslo: PRIO.

PRIO Paper

Sandnes, Marie & Ilaria Carrozza (2023) Winds of Change? The Impact of Non-Western Powers’ Engagement in Afghanistan and the Sahel, PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.
Tadjbakhsh, Shahrbanou & Mohammad Fazeli (2016) Iran and its Relationship to Afghanistan After the Nuclear Deal: A New Era for Constructive Interaction?, PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.
Sharan, Timor & Torunn Wimpelmann Chaudhary (2014) Women's Rights and Political Representation: Past Achievements and Future Challenges, PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.
Hedayat, Lida Nadery & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2014) Where Do Afghan Women Stand on Education and Economic Empowerment?, PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.
Eide, Kai (2014) Afghanistan and the US: Between Partnership and Occupation, PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.
Tadjbakhsh, Shahrbanou (2013) The Persian Gulf and Afghanistan: Iran and Saudi Arabia's Rivalry Projected, PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.
Borchgrevink, Kaja (2007) Religious Actors and Civil Society in Post-2001 Afghanistan, PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.

Report - Other

Borchgrevink, Kaja; Kristian Berg Harpviken; Kanishka Nawabi; Mirwais Wardak; Astri Suhrke; & Arne Strand (2007) Disconnected and Discounted? Religious actors and Civil Society in Post - 2001 Afghanistan, PRIO-CPAU-CMI Policy Brief. Oslo/Bergen: PRIO/CPAU/CMI.

Report - External Series

Erdal, Marta Bivand; Maisie Fitzmaurice; Mira Ivanova; Elinor Karl; & Lise Endregard Hemat (2022) Documentation of qualitative data collection, MIGNEX Handbook Chapter. Oslo: Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO).
Strand, Arne; Kaja Borchgrevink; & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2017) Afghanistan: A Political Economy Analysis, NUPI Report. Oslo: NUPI; PRIO; CMI.
Godal, Bjørn Tore; Gunhild Hoogensen Gjørv; Mats Berdal; Torgeir Hagen; Gro Nystuen; Kristian Berg Harpviken; Sten Rynning; Astri Suhrke; Rolf Tamnes; & Torunn Wimpelmann Chaudhary (2016) En god alliert – Norge i Afghanistan 2001–2014, Norges offentlige utredninger, 8. Oslo: DSS.
Borchgrevink, Kaja; & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2010) Afghanistan’s Religious Landscape: Politicising the Sacred, Noref Policy Brief, 3. Oslo: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre (NOREF).
Strand, Arne; Kristian Berg Harpviken; & Abdul Wasay Najimi (2001) Afghanistan: Current Humanitarian Challenges, CMI Report, 5. Bergen: CMI.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg; Merete Taksdal; & Muhammad Suleman (2001) Strengthening the Self-Reliance of Returnee Communities: The Enjil Community Development Program, Herat Province, Afghanistan, Report from an Independent Mid-term Review for Ockenden International. Wooking, UK: Ockenden International.


Lorentzen, Jenny & Julie Marie Hansen (2016) Integrating Gender into Foreign Policy, PRIO Gender, Peace and Security Update, 2016: PRIO.
Lorentzen, Jenny & Torunn L. Tryggestad (2014) Symposium on Women’s Rights and Empowerment in Afghanistan, PRIO Gender, Peace and Security Update, 2014: PRIO.


Past Events

Blog Posts

The Other ‘Peace Process’ on Afghanistan: Geneva Talks 1982-1988

Posted by Rahmat Hashemi on Tuesday, 16 May 2023

In the past three years, the US government’s role in the Doha Talks (2010-2020) has attracted scrutiny and criticism within the United States and abroad. Starting in November 2010, the Doha Talks was a process of intermittent negotiations between the United States and the Afghan Taliban. The culmination of this process ... Read more »

To Support Afghan Women Activists, Prioritize Local Knowledge over Numbers

Posted by Sophie Mae Berman & Yelena Biberman on Friday, 21 October 2022

In July, the US Department of State launched the US-Afghan Consultative Mechanism in partnership with the United States Institute of Peace, Atlantic Council, Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security, and Sisterhood is Global Institute. As the Taliban continues to strip women and vulnerable groups inside Afghanistan of their human rights, the Mechanism intends to provide ... Read more »

A Painful Dialogue with the Taliban

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken & Arne Strand on Friday, 2 September 2022

A year has passed since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan. The number of lives lost due to war has fallen drastically. But the Taliban’s dismantling of democracy, their gross breaches of human rights, their exclusion of women from education and work, and their hosting of al-Qaeda and other terror ... Read more »

The Taliban, International Law and the Rest of the World

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken & Geir Ulfstein on Monday, 21 March 2022

The population of Afghanistan is facing a humanitarian catastrophe. Twenty-three million Afghans, more than half of the population, are starving. The UN warns of a risk that a million Afghan children will die. In this situation, there is no way of avoiding cooperation with those in control of the country, namely ... Read more »

Contingency Planning in the Digital Age: Biometric Data of Afghans Must Be Reconsidered

Posted by Katja Lindskov Jacobsen & Karl Steinacker on Thursday, 26 August 2021

The situation in Afghanistan changes by the minute. In this blog post, we want to call attention to a largely overlooked issue: protection of Afghan refugees or other Afghans who have been registered biometrically by humanitarian or military agencies. Having collected biometrics from various parts of the Afghan population, for ... Read more »

Is Diplomacy Failing When It Is Needed Most?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Saturday, 21 August 2021

Taliban rule in Afghanistan is now being shaped. The United States, Norway and many other countries have engaged in prolonged dialogue with the Taliban. Now Western countries are closing their embassies and their dialogue with the Taliban is on hold. Is dialogue failing when it is needed most? An absolutely ... Read more »

What happened to Afghanistan’s Security Forces?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Sunday, 15 August 2021

The Taliban have asserted control over large parts of Afghanistan within the course of a few weeks. The last international troops are departing. US President Biden and NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg have both emphasized the strength of Afghanistan’s security forces. But, encountering the Taliban, those very forces seem in many ... Read more »

Will the Taliban Gain From Negotiations?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken, Arne Strand & Astri Suhrke on Thursday, 22 April 2021

In the summer of 2001, a Taliban delegation came to Oslo in the hope of holding talks with Norway’s government. The terrorist attacks in the United States that autumn put a stop to such talks, but the Taliban’s attempt at that time to break out of the “steel ring” of ... Read more »

A Critical Moment for Women’s Political Rights in Intra-Afghan Negotiation and Beyond

Posted by Madhav Joshi & Louise Olsson on Wednesday, 3 March 2021

One year ago, on February 29, 2020, the Doha Agreement was signed between the United States and the Taliban. This agreement outlines a process for a gradual withdrawal of foreign troops in Afghanistan, Taliban’s commitment to preventing the use of Afghan soil against the US and its allies security, and ... Read more »

NATO’s Exit From Afghanistan: ‘a brutal dilemma’

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Friday, 19 February 2021

NATO is facing ‘a brutal dilemma, NATO’s Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, said to the press ahead of NATO meeting of defense ministers on 17-18 February. The goal, said Stoltenberg, is that Afghanistan shall never again become a haven for terrorists attacking NATO and its allies. He continued: ‘While no ally ... Read more »

A Christmas Message from Afghanistan

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Thursday, 7 January 2021

For Afghans, Christmas 2020 marked 41 years since the Soviet intervention. Ever since, this poor, mountainous country in Central Asia has been a focus of global attention. Can we now see signs of a peaceful solution? A tweet posted on Christmas Eve by Muska Dastageer, a young Afghan woman with ... Read more »

Overcoming Mistrust in Afghanistan's Peace Process

Posted by Madhav Joshi on Wednesday, 10 June 2020

The hope of pathways to peace in Afghanistan, following the Doha Agreement on 29 February, has been crushed by mutual mistrust. Over a decade of my research on comparative peace process suggests that while all peace processes are fragile in the early phase, successful ones are characterized by political and rebel leaders with ... Read more »

Afghanistan’s road to peace: what about the fighters?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Monday, 25 May 2020

After a year and a half of negotiations in Doha, the United States and the Taliban signed a peace agreement on 29 February. Essentially the agreement provided that the Taliban, in return for the withdrawal of international forces, would not allow Al Qaeda or similar groups to use Afghan soil ... Read more »

Afghanistan’s Corona Threat Contagion Knows No Borders

Posted by Birgitte Lange & Kristian Berg Harpviken on Tuesday, 5 May 2020

This piece is part of our blog series Beyond the COVID Curve. COVID-19 has quickly changed everything from our daily routines, to the policies of governments, to the fortunes of the global economy. How will it continue to shape society and the conditions for peace and conflict globally in the near ... Read more »

Ceasefires in the Time of COVID-19

Posted by Siri Camilla Aas Rustad, Tora Sagård, Håvard Mokleiv Nygård, Govinda Clayton & Fredrik Methi on Friday, 17 April 2020

This piece is part of our blog series Beyond the COVID Curve. COVID-19 has quickly changed everything from our daily routines, to the policies of governments, to the fortunes of the global economy. How will it continue to shape society and the conditions for peace and conflict globally in the near ... Read more »

Afghanistan at a Crossroads

Posted by Arne Strand & Kristian Berg Harpviken on Thursday, 21 November 2019

Can the conflict in Afghanistan be resolved politically, or must the war continue until one of the parties has won? The conflict in Afghanistan is now the world’s deadliest. The United States and the Taliban negotiated a peace agreement that never got signed. The recent exchange of prisoners may signal ... Read more »

The Battles over Peace in Afghanistan

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Monday, 20 May 2019

The battles over leadership of the peace process in Afghanistan are intensifying. It seems increasingly likely that there will be a peace agreement, in one form or other, between the United States and the Taliban. But an Afghan peace settlement that is not based on dialogue between parties within Afghanistan ... Read more »

Could Peace Talks in Afghanistan Fail Before They Really Begin?

Posted by Kai Eide on Wednesday, 8 May 2019

Is the peace process in Afghanistan already in serious trouble? Talks continue in Doha between the US and the Taliban – which is good. The Loya Jirga – dedicated to peace and reconciliation – has concluded, but with a number of prominent politicians abstaining. In Moscow a significant group of ... Read more »

What Do the Afghan Peace Talks in Moscow Mean?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Tuesday, 12 February 2019

The talks in Moscow between the Taliban and Afghan opposition politicians reflect a new world order, in which Russia is recognized as a global superpower. Even though the Afghan government remains on the sidelines, the talks may become an important part of the unpredictable Afghan peace process. The images from ... Read more »

Can President Trump Bring Peace to Afghanistan?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Monday, 4 February 2019

The negotiations between the United States and the Taliban may represent the most important turning point in Afghanistan since the 2001 US-led intervention. But the path to an internal Afghan peace process is difficult, and only history will tell whether these negotiations marked the onset of a sustainable Afghan peace ... Read more »

The Norwegian Defeat in Afghanistan

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Thursday, 19 July 2018

The Norwegian involvement did not produce lasting results in Afghanistan, but it did foster goodwill with the United States and other allies. But the negative international ripple effects are serious, including an erosion of the commitment to peaceful conflict resolution, as well as an undermining of international norms and rules. ... Read more »

Will the “October Children” from Afghanistan Get Fair Treatment?

Posted by Kai Eide on Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Is Norway’s asylum policy simply strict – or is it also fair and humane? In the coming weeks, approximately 200 young Afghans – the so-called “October children” – will have their cases re-assessed. Originally these children were granted temporary residence permits until they turned 18. Thereafter they were to be ... Read more »

The Taliban’s Choice

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Tuesday, 13 March 2018

The Taliban have, for the first time, been presented with a comprehensive peace initiative. This is an invitation they can not turn down. President Ashraf Ghani’s proposal at the conclusion of the recent meeting of the Kabul Process on Peace and Security Cooperation was as bold as it was surprising. ... Read more »

The Beginning of a Peace Process in Afghanistan – Finally?

Posted by Kai Eide on Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Is Afghanistan finally at a turning point – after so many disappointments and wasted opportunities? At the Kabul Process II conference on 28 February, President Ashraf Ghani proposed to launch peace talks with the Taliban without preconditions, offering to recognize the Taliban as a legitimate political group, and presenting a ... Read more »

Theses on Peacemaking in Afghanistan: a Manifesto

Posted by Barnett R. Rubin on Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Author’s Note: Royalist and republican, Khalqi and Parchami, Soviet Union and the West, communist and Islamist, mujahid and Talib, Hanafi and takfiri, al Qaeda and America, warlord and technocrat, Pashtun and non-Pashtun, Islamic Emirate and Islamic State, KGB, ISI, and CIA – all have for decades carried on an uninterrupted ... Read more »

Afghanistan – a new chapter in the Great Game?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Wednesday, 7 March 2018

May the shifting superpower dynamics bring hope for Afghanistan? Both Moscow and Beijing are displaying increasing interest in Afghanistan, after a decade and a half of domination by Washington. This shift is having effects in both Afghanistan and among its neighbours. the international power play surrounding Afghanistan is changing Recent ... Read more »

Conflict Portrait: Afghanistan

Posted by Thomas Ruttig on Wednesday, 1 November 2017

The armed conflict between the Afghan government, along with its international allies, and armed radical Islamist insurgents intensified after 2014. At the end of that year, the mandate of the NATO-led ISAF combat mission expired, and the responsibility for security was officially handed over to the Afghan authorities. ISAF was ... Read more »

Women, Peace and Security?

Posted by Cecilie Fleming on Wednesday, 21 September 2016

The Norwegian government had lofty ambitions to implement UN Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security in Faryab Province in Afghanistan. However, attempts to realise these ambitions were half-hearted. The role of the gender adviser became a political alibi for the Norwegian Provincial Reconstruction Team’s haphazard efforts to implement the ... Read more »

Rhetoric as Required

Posted by Pia Bergmann on Tuesday, 20 September 2016

From “the pre-emptive defence of Norway”, to “conflict resolution and peace”, even in the event of “war-like actions”, Norwegian politicians have adapted their rhetoric on Afghanistan as required by circumstances and public opinion. From day one, the Norwegian government has been enthusiastic in its support of intervention in Afghanistan. But ... Read more »

Political Defeat – Military Inadequacy! The Swaddling Blanket of Intervention

Posted by Robert Mood on Thursday, 9 June 2016

The military interventions by the West in the Middle East, Afghanistan and North Africa in recent years are examples of bold and efficient use of force resulting in immediate achievement of goals. Saddam Hussein’s military forces were defeated, the Taliban were deprived of their havens and possible massacres in Libya ... Read more »

Can Afghans Reintegrate after Assisted Return from Europe?

Posted by Ceri Oeppen & Nassim Majidi on Friday, 22 May 2015

Governments present the assisted return of rejected asylum seekers and other ‘unwanted’ migrants as the cornerstone of an effective migration management policy. However, it is also a practice criticised by migrants’ rights advocates for being a form of coerced, rather than voluntary, return. One response to critiques is to highlight ... Read more »

An Uncertain Future in Afghanistan

Posted by Arne Strand on Thursday, 26 March 2015

Under the tripartite agreement entered into between Afghanistan, Norway and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Afghans who are refused asylum in Norway have two choices: either to take advantage of the assisted repatriation programme; or to reject this offer and risk being forcibly deported and returned to Kabul ... Read more »

A Muted Voice? Religious Actors and Civil Society in Post-2001 Afghanistan

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken & Kaja Borchgrevink on Wednesday, 25 March 2015

In general, religious actors are not perceived as possible contributors to civil society. In Afghanistan, where religion permeates society and politics, and where religious leaders and networks bear considerable influence, this is particularly problematic. There is a need for a thorough rethink of what civil society is, and the role ... Read more »

A Young and Fragile Time in Afghanistan

Posted by Shaharzad Akbar on Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Afghanistan’s “youth boom” means that the country has a large generation of young people with high expectations for a better future – and high levels of frustration. Such a situation provides fertile ground for radicalization. Afghanistan’s population is estimated to have grown by as much as 2.4 per cent in ... Read more »

How can Norway best Support Afghanistan?

Posted by Arne Strand & Liv Kjølseth on Monday, 23 March 2015

The current situation in Afghanistan is the subject of two opposing narratives: one is a success story about international support and involvement since 2001; the other is a story where much has gone wrong and everything can only get worse. Agreeing on a narrative that is closer to the truth ... Read more »

A New Afghan Spring?

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Monday, 29 September 2014

Sitting in Kabul today, watching the Presidential inauguration on local television, it is difficult to say whether we are seeing a new Afghan spring or the onset of a disaster. After weeks and weeks of quarrelling, the two main presidential contenders settled on a power-sharing formula: Ashraf Ghani is the ... Read more »

The Taliban are an Organized Fighting Force

Posted by Kristian Berg Harpviken on Sunday, 8 June 2014

A new UN report blames the Taliban for a sharp rise in violence against civilians. The Taliban are an organized fighting force. They combine a relatively strong central command with a networked structure in which each of the various factions operate with considerable independence. Establishing control over certain territories has been ... Read more »

Complexities and Challenges in Afghan migration?

Posted by Ceri Oeppen on Tuesday, 25 June 2013

If you look at the return programs organized by European governments (usually in partnership with the IOM) you will notice that return and reintegration are often mentioned together, as if they always coincide. However, reintegration (however it is defined) does not automatically follow return. Also, how ‘success’ in reintegration assistance ... Read more »