Local Forces in Afghanistan: One known detention so far

Status: 01/20/2022 2:34 p.m

After the Bundeswehr withdrew from Afghanistan, there was great concern for local employees. Now the Development Ministry names a specific case in which a local worker was imprisoned for a week.

Six months after the Bundeswehr troops withdrew from Afghanistan, the German Development Ministry (BMZ) is aware of individual reports that local employees of German organizations have been threatened or abused by the Taliban. However, most of the reports could not be confirmed – also because nobody is currently on site in Afghanistan.

A spokesman for the BMZ said that “a specific case is known in which a local worker from German development cooperation was imprisoned for a week”. In addition, the BMZ has no knowledge of its own about threats, abuse or targeted killings of local staff by the Taliban since August 2021.

Almost 6000 people admitted in Germany

The Federal Ministry of Defense also speaks of individual information, according to which former local staff or their family members reported attacks and threats. However, the ministry has “no verifiable information” about a general threat to former local Bundeswehr personnel since the Taliban took power.

In June 2021, the Bundeswehr withdrew from Afghanistan after almost twenty years. When the Taliban took power immediately afterwards, the federal government took part in an eleven-day evacuation mission for those in need of protection.

By the end of 2021, Germany had taken in almost 6,000 people from Afghanistan. Between mid-May and the end of November, however, more than 24,500 people from Afghanistan were promised to stay in Germany.

Lots of evidence of human rights violations

Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock announced in December that she would speed up the evacuation of those in need of special protection from Afghanistan: “We are working flat out to get everyone to safety.”

Afghanistan: Federal Foreign Minister Baerbock presents action plan

12/23/2021 8:12 p.m

There is ample evidence of human rights abuses under the Taliban in Afghanistan. Numerous Afghan soldiers and police officers are said to have disappeared. In December, several states criticized the fact that members of the Afghan security forces were apparently being kidnapped.


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