2019 witnessed a drastic increase in NATO airstrikes, growing regional instability due to the Iran-US conflict, insufficient recovery from the 2018 drought, another contested election, and drastic cuts in foreign military aid in Afghanistan. The Washington Post’s release of confidential memos and interview notes from the Special Investigator General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) refocused international attention on the results from the nearly 1 trillion USD spent in Afghanistan. This conflict diagnostic uses five-year data trends based off adaptations of the Country Indicators for Foreign Policy Project (CIFP) to arrive at a risk-assessment for Afghanistan in 2020. This report identifies the shift of Iranian support in favour of the Taliban, increasing regional instability due to the Iran-US conflict, climate-based displacement, and the US-Taliban peace agreement as the primary risk factors for conflict in Afghanistan.
Banner image by EJ Wolfson, courtesy of Unsplash.