Afghanistan sees 81% drop in terrorism impact, Global Index shows

The Global Terrorism Index, released by the Australia-based Institute for Economics and Peace, revealed that terrorism-related deaths in Afghanistan decreased by 519 in 2023, marking an 81% improvement from previous years.

The report shows that 2023 was the first year since 2019 that Afghanistan was not ranked as the country most impacted by terrorism.

“Afghanistan experienced a sharp decrease in the impact of terrorism, with deaths falling by 81% to 119 in 2023,” the report noted. For the first time since the index’s inception, Afghanistan is ranked outside the top five countries most impacted by terrorism, recording 119 deaths from terrorism in 2023.

The report also indicated a significant reduction in terrorism activity, with total incidents decreasing by 71%. “This year marks the lowest level of terror activity in Afghanistan in the last two decades,” the index stated.

However, the index clarified that this reduction does not imply that peace has been fully restored in Afghanistan. It noted, “The GTI does not include acts of state repression and violence by state actors; thus, acts committed by the Taliban are no longer included in the report’s scope.” Reports of repression and violence toward civilians, media, former government officials, and human rights advocates have been widespread.

Terrorism remains largely concentrated in the northern provinces, with Kabul and Takhar experiencing the highest number of terror attacks in 2023. “The highest number of deaths from terrorism occurred in Kabul province, with most deaths resulting from attacks by the Khorasan Chapter of the Islamic State (Daesh),” the index highlighted.

Despite Kabul remaining the province most affected by terrorism for the tenth consecutive year, the number of deaths has reached its lowest level recorded, with 52 deaths resulting from 22 attacks in 2023, down from 217 deaths and 68 attacks the previous year.

The report further reveals that Daesh continues to be the most active terrorist group in Afghanistan, responsible for 17 incidents and 73 deaths in 2023, accounting for over 61% of the total deaths in the country for the year.