Analysis of all reported AGE incidents in Afghanistan during the month of July indicated a 7% reduction from last month’s assessment. Additionally, during this assessment period, IED-related incidents decreased by 20% from figures recorded in June, and amounted to 44% of total countrywide reported AGE incidents, while Direct Fire Attacks increased by 7%, and amounted to 44% of the total countrywide reported incidents. Additionally, IED Discoveries/Attempts amounted to 65% of the total IED-related incidents.
Regionally, there was a 9% increase in the number of reported AGE incidents in the Northern Region (See Figure 1), a 24% increase in the Northeastern Region, a 25% increase in the Eastern Region, and an 87% increase in the Central Highlands Region while the Southern Region experienced a 20% decrease, the Southeastern Region a 21% decrease. In the Central and Western Regions there were insignificant statistical changes. Analysis of countrywide AGE operations during this assessment period indicated that that a considerable number of IED-related incidents constituted IED Discoveries/Attempts, however, there was also a heightened degree of aggression in AGE’s Direct Fire Attacks, especially in the Southeastern and Eastern Region, where a number of effective Direct Fire Attacks were noted.
There were some notable trends that may provide further insight into various developments across the country:
Reflecting last month’s assessment, Wardak and Logar Provinces remained the most volatile areas in the Central Region, and this trend is likely to continue for the rest of the fighting season. Although the AGE campaign within Kabul City reduced significantly during this period of assessment, AGE’s launched a large-scale attack against a NATO-affiliated firm (See Kabul City). Lastly, ANSF launched a major clearing operation in Logar Province, and surrounding areas bordering Pakistan, and Nangarhar Province.
There were no tactical changes in AGE’s campaign in the Northern Region. Consistent with past reporting, Faryab Province remained the most volatile part of the region, with a substantial increase in AGE kinetic operations. Most notable was the VBIED Attack against ANSF in Aqcha District of Jowzjan Province, a relatively calm area with reported violence being extremely rare.
Reporting indicated a significant increase in the overall number of AGE incidents in the Northeastern Region. This increase stems from intensified AGE aggression, especially in Kunduz City, where AGE’s launched a number of relatively effective attacks against ANSF. While AGE maintained a steady battle rhythm in Baghlan Province, they failed to attain any considerable success during this month. Elsewhere in the region, reported AGE incidents remained relatively low.
Overall, statistically there were no major changes in the amount of reported AGE incidents in the Western Region. There were, however, increases in violence in rural areas of Herat and Ghor Provinces. Although reporting indicated a reduction in AGE operations in Farah Province, AGE’s nonetheless maintained their campaign within the Farah City.
In the Southern Region the amount of reported AGE incidents remained reduced by 20%during this period of assessment. Kandahar and Helmand Provinces remained the most kinetic environments, with a relatively high number of IED and Direct Attacks against ANSF and GoA. AGE’s also launched three (3) suicide attacks in Kandahar, Helmand, and Uruzgan Provinces.
The number of reported AGE incidents in the Southeastern Region reduced by 21% during this period of assessment. However, AGE’s remained highly active throughout most parts of the region, with a several notable success against ANSF. ISAF/ANSF also intensified their operations in parts of the Loya Paktya Region, with a high number of reported airstrikes against foreign and local AGE fighters. Overall, the Southeastern Regions remained highly kinetic during tis period of assessment.
Reporting indicated a significant increase (25%) in AGE operations in the Eastern Region, which was mainly manifested through intensified Direct Fire Attacks in Nangarhar and Kunar Provinces. Additionally, while Kunar Province has been volatile for quite some time, coupled with the last 2 reporting periods the situation in Nangarhar Province is observed to rapidly deteriorate. This was manifested through a major surge in AGE attacks throughout most parts of the province. No major trends or patterns in overall AGE operations were observed. In addition to a high amount of AGE kinetic activity in the region, cross-border shelling on the eastern side of the Kunar Valley continued throughout the month.
There was a substantial increase in the amount of AGE activity in the Central Highlands Region. While AGE in most parts of the region do not have much local support in the region, and as such, are unable to launch any larger offensives for prolonged periods of time, during this period of assessment AGE’s in northeastern Bamyan Province and the bordering areas of Day Kundi and Helmand Provinces intensified their operations with several reported attacks against ANSF assets.