An aerial view from the window of a Blackhawk helicopter between Balkh Province and Kunduz Province
Map of Afghanistan with Kunduz highlighted
|Coordinates (Capital): Coordinates:|
|• Governor||Ghulam Sakhi Baghlani|
|• Total||8,040 km2 (3,100 sq mi)|
|• Density||120/km2 (310/sq mi)|
|ISO 3166 code||AF-KAB|
Kunduz (Pashto/Persian: کندز) is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, located in the northern part of the country next to Tajikistan. The population of the province is around 953,800, which is multi-ethnic and mostly a tribal society. The city of Kunduz serves as the capital of the province. The Kunduz Airport is located next to the provincial capital.
The Kunduz River valley dominates the Kunduz Province. The river flows irregularly from south to north into the Amu Darya river which forms the border between Afghanistan and Tajikistan. A newly constructed bridge crosses the Amu Darya at Sher Khan Bandar. The river, its tributaries, and derivative canals provide irrigation to the irrigated fields that dominate land usage in the agricultural province. There are also rain-fed fields and open range land that span several miles.
|History of Afghanistan|
The area has been part of many empires in the past. It became part of the Afghan Durrani Empire in the mid-18th century. It saw major migration from Russian Turkestan in the north during the early 1920s. Between one hundred and two-hundred thousand Tajiks and Uzbeks fled the conquest of their homeland by Russian Red Army and settled in northern Afghanistan.
During the war against the Taliban and al-Qaida in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in the United States, Kunduz was the location from where thousands of Pakistani military personnel, Afghan sympathizers, and some members of the Taliban and Al-Qaeda were airlifted to safety within Pakistan. This airlift also known as the Kunduz Airlift of the "Airlift of evil" took place during a period in November 2001.
In 2008, more details emerged in Descent into Chaos by Ahmed Rashid:
One senior (U.S.) intelligence analyst told me, "The request was made by Musharraf to Bush, but Cheney took charge—a token of who was handling Musharraf at the time. The approval was not shared with anyone at State, including Colin Powell, until well after the event. Musharraf said Pakistan needed to save its dignity and its valued people. Two planes were involved, which made several sorties a night over several nights. They took off from air bases in Chitral and Gilgit in Pakistan's northern areas, and landed in Kunduz, where the evacuees were waiting on the tarmac. Certainly hundreds and perhaps as many as one thousand people escaped. Hundreds of ISI officers, Taliban commanders, and foot soldiers belonging to the IMU and al Qaeda personnel boarded the planes. What was sold as a minor extraction turned into a major air bridge. The frustrated U.S. [clarify] who watched it from the surrounding high ground dubbed it "Operation Evil Airlift."
Another senior U.S. diplomat told me afterward, "Musharraf fooled us because after we gave approval, the ISI may have run a much bigger operation and got out more people. We just don't know. At the time nobody wanted to hurt Musharraf, and his prestige with the army was at stake. The real question is why Musharraf did not get his men out before. Clearly the ISI was running its own war against the Americans and did not want to leave Afghanistan until the last moment."
Germany has 4000 soldiers stationed in the NATO-ISAF Kunduz province Provincial Reconstruction Team, along with Regional Command North. The province was largely peaceful until Taliban militants started infiltrating the area in 2009.
On 4 September 2009 the German commander called in an American jetfighter, which attacked two NATO fuel trucks, which had been captured by insurgents. More than 90 people died, among them at least 40 civilians, who had gathered to collect fuel.
It was reported that on 21 November 2009 a bomb going off along the Takhar Kunduz highway killed a child and injured two others.
The governor, Mohammad Omar, was killed by a bomb on 8 October 2010.
Politics and governance
The current governor of Kunduz province is Ghulam Sakhi Baghlani. The city of Kunduz is the capital of the province. All law enforcement activities throughout the province are controlled by the Afghan National Police (ANP). The Kunduz border with neighboring Tajikistan is monitored and protected by the Afghan Border Police (ABP), which is part of the ANP. A provincial police chief is assigned to lead both the ANP and ABP. The police chief represents the Ministry of the Interior in Kabul. The ANP is backed by other Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), including the NATO-led forces.
The population of Kunduz province is around 953,800, which is multi-ethnic and mostly a tribal society. According to the Naval Postgraduate School, the ethnic groups of the province are as follows: Pashtun 33%; Uzbek 27%; Tajik 22%; Turkmen 11%; Hazara 6%; and Pashai 1%.
|Ali Abad||45,851||47% Pashtuns, 33% Tajik, 12% Hazara, 8% Uzbek|
|Archi||99,000||40% Pashtuns, 35% Uzbek, 15% Tajik, 10% Turkman|
|Chahar Dara||69251||55% Pashtuns, 25% Tajik, 12% Uzbek, 8% Turkmen|
|Imam Sahib||250,000||45% Uzbeks, 25% Pashtuns, 25% Tajiks, 5% Turkmens|
|Khan Abad||110,000||40% Pashtuns, 25% Tajik, 20% Hazara, 10% Uzbek, 5% Pashai|
|Kunduz||259,497||Pashtuns, Tajik, Uzbek, Turkmen, Hazara|
|Qalay-I-Zal||120,000||90% Turkmens, 10% Pashtuns|
The province is represented in Afghan domestic cricket by the Kunduz Province cricket team. National player Mirwais Ashraf is from Kunduz and currently represents Afghanistan in international cricket.
- "Settled Population of Kunduz province by Civil Division, Urban, Rural and Sex-2012-13". Islamic Republic of Afghanistan: Central Statistics Organization. Retrieved 2014-1-17.
- "Province: Herat". Program for Culture & Conflict Studies. Naval Postgraduate School. Retrieved 2014-01-17.
- Wörmer, Nils (2012). "The Networks of Kunduz: A History of Conflict and Their Actors, from 1992 to 2001". Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik. Afghanistan Analysts Network. p. 8. Retrieved 7 September 2013. "According to The Liaison Office the ethnic composition of Kunduz province is as follows: 34 per cent Pashtun, 27 per cent Uzbek, 20 per cent Tajik, 9.4 per cent Turkmen, 4.6 per cent Arab, 3.5 per cent Hazara, plus a few very small groups including Baluch, Pashai and Nuristani."
- Bilal Sarwary (8 July 2001). "Taliban (trough pashtoon residents of the area) infiltrate once-peaceful Afghan north". BBC. Retrieved 5 September 2009.
- Scores dead in Nato raid on Kunduz. Al Jazeera English, September 2009
- Nato air strike in Afghanistan kills scores – The Guardian, 4 September 2009
- bombings kill 2 Afghan children, November 2009. Kabul, Xinhua news
- King, Laura (2 October 2011). "Afghanistan suicide bomber kills district governor, 6 others". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- Afghanistan Geographic & Thematic Layers
- Ethnic data taken from UNHCR Kunduz District Profiles on aims.org.af
- Aliabad District, Kunduz Province. Afghan Biographies.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kunduz Province.|
||Khatlon Province, Tajikistan|
|Balkh Province||Takhar Province|
|Samangan Province||Baghlan Province|