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Please note that this country guidance document has been replaced by a more recent one. The latest versions of country guidance documents are available at /country-guidance.

Last updated: December 2020

The province of Badghis has a population of approximately 550 000, mainly Tajiks, Pashtuns, Uzbeks, and Turkmens. It is situated in western Afghanistan and borders Herat, Faryab and Ghor, and shares an international border with Turkmenistan. It is divided into seven districts. The roads of Badghis have been reported to be in bad condition and mostly unsafe because of insurgent and criminal activity.

Anti-government groups are active in several of the districts, control parts of the province and often carry out insurgency activities. ISKP presence is also reported.

Four of the districts in the province were categorised by LWJ as contested. The districts Muqur, Ghormash, and Bala Murghab were considered under Taliban control.

ACLED collected data on 388 violent events in the period from 1 March 2019 to 30 June 2020 (average of 5.6 incidents per week), of which 241 were coded as ‘battles’, 133 ‘remote violence’ and 14 incidents of ‘violence against civilians’.

Western provinces, including Badghis, have experienced an increase in insurgent activities, with Taliban besieging areas of the region. Continued armed clashes between Taliban fighters and Afghan security forces took place in the province. It is reported that Taliban also set up checkpoints and blocked roads, sometimes leading to severe food and supply shortages. Incidents with civilian casualties included, for example airstrikes, mainly in Bala Murghab district.

UNAMA documented 161 civilian casualties (77 deaths and 84 injured) in 2019, representing 29 civilian victims per 100 000 inhabitants. This was an increase of 104 % compared to 2018. The leading causes for the civilian casualties were ground engagements, airstrikes, and non-suicide IEDs.

RS ranked Badghis in the category of provinces where the number of civilian casualties was between 26 and 50 for the first quarter of 2020, and between 0 and 25 for the second quarter.

In the period 1 March 2019 – 30 June 2020, 29 359 persons were displaced from the province of Badghis, of which 84 % in the province itself (mainly in Bala Murghab and Qala-I Naw). Almost no internal displacement from other provinces to Badghis was reported in this period.

Looking at the indicators, it can be concluded that indiscriminate violence is taking place in the province of Badghis, however not at a high level and, accordingly, a higher level of individual elements is required in order to show substantial grounds for believing that a civilian, returned to the territory, would face a real risk of serious harm within the meaning of Article 15(c) QD.

Main COI reference: Security situation 2020, 2.3