News Alerts

27 Apr 2019 | 03:04 AM UTC

Afghanistan: Heightened security measures, risk of attack on Victory Day Apr. 28

Afghanistan News Alert

Elevated terrorist threat, heightened security measures expected nationwide on Mujahideen Victory Day April 28

TIMEFRAME expected from 4/23/2019, 12:00 AM until 4/29/2019, 11:59 PM (Asia/Kabul). COUNTRY/REGION Afghanistan

Event

Heightened security measures are expected in Kabul and other major Afghan cities on Sunday, April 28, in observance of Mujahideen Victory Day. Businesses and government offices may close for the holiday, and public gatherings and other celebratory events are expected. There is also a heightened risk of militant attacks over the Victory Day holiday weekend, as armed groups may attempt to take advantage of the reduced number of Afghan civilians at work and in the streets to carry out large-scale attacks in the Green Zone (Kabul) or elsewhere on US, Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), National Directorate of Security (NDS), and diplomatic personnel and positions.

A visibly reinforced security deployment is to be expected in cities across Afghanistan, particularly Kabul, during the holiday period.

Context

Mujahideen Victory Day is observed annually throughout Afghanistan on April 28, and commemorates the mujahideen's overthrow of the Soviet-backed government of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan, led by Mohammad Najibullah, in 1992.

The April 28 observance also comes shortly after the Taliban issued a statement announcing the launch of their annual spring offensive on April 12. This year's offensive has been termed the "Al-Fath" campaign, named after the triumphant 48th sura of the Qur'an commemorating the Treaty of Hudaybiyyah. In Kabul and other urban centers, Taliban attacks typically launch with an initial suicide bombing at the gate or perimeter of the target, followed by the entry of more attackers with a combination of attack methods, including improvised explosive devices (IEDs), shootouts, and grenades. Such attacks are often directed against high value targets, which ensure maximum publicity.

Advice

Individuals in Afghanistan, particularly in Kabul, are advised to remain vigilant for militant and terrorist activity, avoid unnecessary movements and public gatherings, and adhere to instructions issued by their home governments.

The security environment in Afghanistan remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.

 

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