Shindand (Pashto: شين ډنډ; formerly known as Sabzwar), is one of the 16 districts of Herat Province, in western Afghanistan, and is situated in the southern part of that province. It borders Adraskan District to the north, Ghor Province to the east and Farah Province to the south and west. The population was 151,900 (as of 2005) in 562 villages. The district center is the town of Shindand, which boasts a very active market area. Shindand Air Base is located near the town. The main Herat-Kandahar road passes through the district. The Zerekoh Valley is in the district.
Its ancient name was Esfezar. Notable historical sites in Shindand include Qala-Dokhtar and Qala Rustam-Zal.
Around midnight August 21, 2008, at least 90 Afghan civilians, including 60 children, were killed by foreign and Afghan military personnel in military operations which included airstrikes in the district.
Shindand District is divided into five buluks, namely: Zawol, Zerkoh, Poshteh-Koh, Kooh-Zoor and Qasaba. Shindand District is one of the most diverse and wide districts in Afghanistan, representing thirty different Afghan tribes which include both Tajik and Pashtun groups and sub-groups. Though in recent times tribal differences have been exploited by powerful figures in Shindand nevertheless there has generally been good relationship and inter-marriages within these tribes.
Shindand enjoys lots of sunshine and winds all year long. Though the winds pick up during the months of May through September, called Badayeh-Sado-Bist Roozeh (120 Day Winds). The rainy season is from November/December to March/April, though the rains are scattered.
- Dupree, Nancy Hatch (1971) An Historical Guide To Afghanistan Chapter 15, Afghan Tourist Organization, Kabul OCLC 241390
- Though official figures put the population at 150,000 people, the actual numbers are estimated to be around 800,000.
- Khelwatgar, Najib and Qurishi, Ahmad (23 August 2008) "Afghan Army open fire on Shindand protesters, Karzai worried" Rawa News; archived here by WebCitation
- Rondeaux, Candace and DeYoung, Karen (27 August 2009) "U.N. Finds Airstrike Killed 90 Afghans: Most of Fatalities In U.S.-Led Attack Said to Be Children" The Washington Post, archived here by WebCitation
- Wedding blast in Afghanistan kills 23, including local politician, Rahim Faiez, The Associated Press, 14 July 2012
- Shindand district mayor, passerby killed, Central Asia Online
- photos of Shindand District Robert Lankenau, 2005-03
Khair Mohammad Gardezi Taliban Commander Herat Area