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The province of Farah has approximately 563 000 inhabitants. Most of its inhabitants are Pashtuns. It is located in the western part of Afghanistan. It borders Herat, Ghor, Helmand and Nimroz, and shares an international border with Iran. The province is divided into 11 districts. Part of the Ring Road leads through Farah, connecting the province with Herat City in the north and with the provinces of Nimroz and Helmand. Farah is of strategic interest to insurgents and pro-government strongmen because of its transport routes into bordering Iran.
Five of the districts in the province were categorised by LWJ as under Taliban control, five districts (including Farah city) were categorised as contested, and one was under governmental control.
The Taliban traditionally have a strong presence in Farah and occupy strategic areas, such as the border area and important traffic routes. Government presence in the province is limited;
No incidents related to ISKP were reported.
ACLED collected data on 441 violent events in the period from 1 March 2019 to 30 June 2020 (average of 6.3 incidents per week), of which 277 were coded as ‘battles’, 148 as ‘explosions/remote violence’ and 16 as ‘violence against civilians’.
Intense fighting took place between the Taliban and Afghan security forces. Other examples of incidents include Taliban attacks on district capitals and on the provincial capital. In various instances, civilians were killed when travelling on the road, being hit by roadside bombs. Civilian casualties were also reported due to airstrikes by foreign troops on drug production factories.
Further impact on the civilian population included the destruction of health centres in the province.
In 2019, UNAMA documented 147 civilian casualties (87 deaths and 60 injured), representing 26 civilian victims per 100 000 inhabitants. This was a decrease of 47 % compared to 2018. The leading causes for the civilian casualties were non-suicide IEDs, ground engagements and airstrikes.
RS ranked Farah in the category of provinces where the number of civilian casualties was between 26 and 50 for the first quarter of 2020; between 26 and 50 civilian casualties were also recorded in the second quarter.
In the period 1 March 2019 – 30 June 2020, 17 830 persons were displaced from the province of Farah, of whom 86 % were displaced in the province itself. No conflict-induced displacement from other provinces to Farah was reported in this period.
Looking at the indicators, it can be concluded that indiscriminate violence is taking place in the province of Farah, 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, 2.8