Even if Afghanistan does not fall back into outright conflict, there is no end in sight to the suffering of the Afghan people.
One year after the Taliban's ascent to power in Afghanistan, the plight of Afghans is worsening. The economic situation is dire, malnutrition rates are increasing, women's rights are being curtailed, there is continuing migration and internal displacement, and the health care system is crumbling - the already high maternal mortality rates are thought to have increased four-fold.
Since seizing power, the Taliban claim they have achieved full territorial control, established security and removed islands of illegitimate power'. However, while physical security has improved by some measures - aid agencies report enhanced access to some provinces - a significant rise in attacks by the Islamic State Khorasan Province (IS-KP) targeting Shia and other minorities is one of many reminders that Afghanistan is far from secure. In addition, targeted killings of high-profile Taliban supporters and members, some claimed by the IS-KP in suicide attacks mimicking Taliban tactics, underline the vicious nature of the ongoing conflict.
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