Article 7 QD stipulates that protection can only be provided by:
At the time of writing, the Taliban control almost the entire territory of Afghanistan. As of 1 October 2021, the LWJ mapping of Taliban control in Afghanistan, last updated on 15 September 2021, considered 391 districts under Taliban control, Chahar Kint district in Balkh as contested, and 15 districts in Panjshir, Baghlan, Parwan, Kapisa, Wardak, and Takhar as having guerrilla activity.
During the insurgency, the Taliban positioned themselves as the shadow government of Afghanistan, and their commission and governing bodies replicated the administrative offices and duties of a typical government. They were described as becoming an organised political movement operating a parallel administration in large swaths of Afghanistan, and as evolving to become a local governance actor in the country by gaining and holding territory and thereby undertaking some responsibility for the well-being of local communities. In territories under their control, the group operated a parallel justice system based on a strict interpretation of the Sharia, leading to executions by shadow courts and punishments deemed by UNAMA to be cruel, inhuman, and degrading. However, an increasing number of Afghans across the country were reported to seek justice in Taliban courts due to feeling frustrated with the State’s bureaucracy, corruption, and lengthy processing times.
No other actors are currently found to be in control of a significant part of the territory and able to provide protection within the meaning of Article 7 QD.
Where no actor of protection meeting the requirements of Article 7 QD can be identified in the home area of the applicant, the assessment may proceed with examination of the availability of internal protection alternative.