Outlook for Afghanistan's security in 2017.
The Taliban attacked a major Afghan army base on April 21 near Mazar-e-Sharif in the northern Balkh province, killing over 140 government soldiers. The attack underlined the strength of the Taliban insurgency and the vulnerability of ostensibly secure, high-profile targets.
- The narcotics trade is likely to rise in southern provinces, fuelling the trafficking problem for Afghanistan’s neighbours.
- Development workers and NGOs will face security threats from both the Taliban and IS combatants.
- Russian and Iranian outreach to the Taliban will continue, with little positive impact on Afghan security.