Afghanistan: April 20, 2002


The Taliban has gone underground and is communicating mainly through leaflets that show up in eastern and southern Afghanistan. The latest batch threaten death to parents who send their daughters to school. The last batch of leaflets (from last month), offered monetary rewards for killing, wounding or capturing foreign soldiers ($100,000 for capture, $50,000 for killing). There has been little evidence that many, Afghans are paying attention to the leaflets. But there are lots of pro-Taliban men out there (perhaps ten percent, or more, of the population) and eventually some will take some kind of action. There are already several incidents a week in which armed men fire on peacekeepers. This sort of action has not had much effect, and the attackers often get killed.

British intelligence has warned that there may be an assassination plot against the recently returned former Afghan king. The assassins are said to be posing as journalists. The king returned to Afghanistan on the 18th.


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