|Afghan National Police|
د افغانستان ملي پولیس(in Pashto)
پولیس ملی افغانستان(in Persian)
|Dissolved||15 August 2021 (de facto)|
|Employees||116,000 (December 2018)|
The Afghan National Police (ANP; Pashto : د افغانستان ملي پولیس; Persian : پلیس ملی افغانستان) was the national police force of the former Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, serving as a single law enforcement agency all across the country. The agency was under the responsibility of Afghanistan's Ministry of Interior Affairs, headed by Hayatullah Hayat. The ANP had 116,000 members in December 2018.
The Afghan police traces its roots to the early 18th-century when the Hotak dynasty was established in Kandahar followed by Ahmad Shah Durrani's rise to power. The police force gradually became modernized after 1880 when Emir Abdur Rahman Khan established diplomatic relations with British India. In the 1980s it began receiving training and equipment from former Soviet Union. The current ANP was formed after the removal of the Taliban regime in late 2001 and is a member of Interpol.
Several government agencies from the United States as well as Germany's Bundespolizei (BPOL) and the United Kingdom's Ministry of Defence Police provided most of the early training. In 2007, the EU-led mission (EUPOL Afghanistan) was heading the civilian policing in the Kabul area but by 2005 the United States established training programs in all the provinces of Afghanistan. Since 2009, the Afghan National Police began receiving advanced training from U.S.-led NATO forces.In 2021 however, the Taliban seized most of the country and the ANP ceased to exist.
The Afghan police force has its origins in the Hotak and Durrani empires in the early 18th century, and over the centuries it was modernized to its current form. In the 1950s a group of army officers were reassigned to the police forces to develop a new cadre and modernize the police organization. And in the early 1960s five of the top police students from the Kabul police academy were sent to Munich Germany to get their master's degrees in criminology and police work. Among those were Farouq Barakzai, Farouq Yaqobi, Assadullah Ahmadzai, Sidique Wahidi, Saadullah Yusufi, and some others. The agency became stronger throughout the 1980s Soviet occupation until Kabul fell in 1992 to the insurgents. The country at that point descended into civil war and then came under the heel of the Taliban government, which enforced a primitive and barbaric justice system.
After the collapse of the Taliban government in late 2001, there was little in the nation resembling a functional police department as private armed militias of warlords quickly filled the vacuum left behind by a lack of central governance. The Ministry of Interior in Kabul, under the new Karzai government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, exercised little control over provincial police structures and was unable to effectively secure the remote provinces. Most of these problems were established after the Fall of Kabul in 1992, when the Soviet-backed government of Najibullah fell apart and the country entered into anarchy and chaos. From 1978 to 1992 the Afghan police had firm control over the country, much thanks to the Soviet Union and other factors related to the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan or the Soviet war in the country.Traditionally, police officers were poorly paid, recruited or conscripted from the poorest classes of society and frequently held in contempt by the communities they served. Compounding these factors, over two decades of unrest had also resulted in an illiteracy rate conservatively estimated at over 70% for police recruits.
Although early efforts had trained 35,000 officers in basic recruit schools during 2003 and 2004, this training was insufficient to strengthen the structures and senior command levels needed to create an effective police force. Germany, as lead nation for police under the Bonn II Agreement, concentrated its efforts on setting up the Kabul Police Academy and drafted the long range blueprint for restructuring the police services. Except for Kunduz Province which had a Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT), Germany's program had only limited reach into the provinces. As the US Department of State International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Bureau's (INL) activity at this time was limited in resources and scope, the US Departments of Defense and State, in 2005, decided to shift the implementation of the police training and equipment program to the Office of Security Cooperation-Afghanistan (OSC-A), under the authority of the Commanding General, Combined Forces Command (CFC-A). In 2006, OSC-A became the Combined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan (CSTC-A) keeping the OSC-A mission.
The 2005 changes led to an increased impetus to implement significant reform programs, particularly the reform of higher staff levels at the Ministry of the Interior, the placement of police mentors throughout the country, substantial pay increases in the police salary plan and an impending, complete restructuring of the police payroll system. A nationwide reassessment of infrastructure and equipment needs was also undertaken, followed with the distribution of critically needed weapons, ammunition, vehicles, and office/dorm furniture. Although progress has been made in the areas of infrastructure, equipment and payroll distribution, these programs would take some time to reach fruition.
In the late 2000s the number of ANP officers getting killed in the line of duty jumped very sharply, with over 1,600 officers being killed in the years 2008 and 2009. By 2012, Afghan officials estimated that about 200 police officers are killed in the line of duty each month.Also see List of Afghan security forces fatality reports in Afghanistan.
In the meantime, ANP members have been accused of massacres and corruption. In 2012, one ANP from Paktia and two from Logar were arrested for kidnapping children. The police confessed to the crime, while one of the kidnapped boys said, "I received a phone call from the policemen who introduced themselves as my friends. They offered me a ride. I went unconscious after they dragged me into a car."In January 2013, a police commander in Uruzgan Province was accused of killing 121 local people. He fled to Ghazni Province and authorities said they will soon arrest the fugitive.
In early 2012, the Ministry of Interior provided 300 armoured vehicles to the 1st border police brigade stationed around the porous Durand Line, in Nangarhar province. Col. Mohammad Ayub Hussainkhel, the 3rd Border Police Brigade Commander, said "the border police are now capable of maintaining better security for the Durand Line and to prevent infiltration of militants into the province from Pakistan."In February 2012, the United States promised that it would support the government of Afghanistan to protect its sovereignty and effectively control its borders. At a 2012 meeting with Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt in Chicago, US President Barack Obama said, "We are going to be consulting with not only Denmark but our other allies in making sure that is a smooth transition and one that is sustained, where we continue to help the Afghan government support its own sovereignty and effectively control its borders." In April 2013, the Ministry of Interior announced a strategy to strengthen and make the ANP professional with support from the international community. It is a ten-year plan designed to make the ANP become more closer to a Western standards police force.
The ANP appears to have dissolved as a result of the de facto reassertion of Taliban military control over Afghanistan.
The Afghan National Police (ANP) is an organization that falls under the control and responsibility of the Afghan Ministry of Interior, along with the Counter-Narcotics Police of Afghanistan (CNPA) and the Counter Terrorism Department. The ANP is composed of the following sub-agencies:
The Afghan Uniform Police (AUP) is the primary civil law enforcement agency in Afghanistan. The ANP is divided into five regional commands (north, south, east, west and central). Other forces falling under the command and control of the ANP include local traffic police departments as well as the fire department.
The Public Security Police (PSP) was a gendarmerie responsible for civil order and counterinsurgency.The PSP was formed in March 2018 from part of the ANP Afghan National Civil Order Police (ANCOP) with the majority of the ANCOP transferring to the Afghan National Army to form the Afghan National Civil Order Force (ANCOF).
The Afghan Highway Police (AHP) was a sub-department of the national police that is currently dissolved with only speculation of return. Their primary responsibility was to provide traffic safety and overall security of the "Ring Road" highway that connects most of the major population centers in Afghanistan. Most of the personnel, equipment and facilities that comprise the highway police were reorganized under the uniform police.
The Afghan Border Police (ABP) are responsible for securing all the borders with neighboring countries and international airports of Afghanistan against the illegal entry of persons as well as the smuggling of contraband. The ABP is divided into six regional zones, with headquarters in Mazar-i-Sharif, Fayzabad, Jalalabad, Gardez, Kandahar, and Herat. As of January 2011, there are at least 25 U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection officers providing training to the Afghan Border Police. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano stated that the number could reach 65 or more by the end of 2011. Napolitano visited the Torkham border crossing with Pakistan and was satisfied with the progress being made there.The ABP specific duties include the following:
The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) is staffed with 4,148 investigators spread over the nation with the majority in Kabul. They are tasked with investigation, crime scene forensic procedures, documentation of crime, and assisting other agencies to include assistance through the crime lab housed at the Ministry of Interior Affairs.
There are a number of police districts throughout Afghanistan for example Police District 9 covers about 24 km2 of Eastern Kabul.
The United States Army Corps of Engineers built nearly 200 modern police stations for the Afghan National Police. The total cost of the project was reported to be over $600 million US dollars, and each police station is said to cost about $6 million.
The main ANP training facility in Kabul was established by the German police mission and is now led by the United States.
Regional ANP training facilities have been established in:
Some ranks are known by several names. These disparities are most-likely caused through different translations from Dari to western languages as well as being interpreted differently by inherently unrelated agencies such as the U.S. military versus the German Police. The role of the "sergeant", or non-commissioned officer, is not well developed and is often overlooked by the prestige associated with being a regular, or commissioned, officer (lieutenant or higher). This lack of emphasis on the subordinate ranks has also stunted the clear definition of ranks as well as their roles and responsibilities.
The ranks of 3rd Lieutenant and Senior Captain are being phased out after the Ministry of Interior underwent a Rank Reform process in which they eliminated a disproportionate number of senior-ranking officers within the police. These ranks are believed to have served as a way to better distinguish and balance out an extremely top-heavy leadership corps.
|Staff Sergeant||2nd Sergeant|
|Senior Sergeant||1st Sergeant|
The original formation of police and security forces saw an overwhelming majority of senior-ranking personnel due to disorganization and corruption. It was not uncommon to find someone holding a senior rank, such as lieutenant colonel, possessing minimal qualifications or having little to no responsibilities for a rank of that stature. It was a period of total mismanagement that allowed people to use bribery and other forms of influence to gain prominent positions in the national police force. It was soon evident that the organization was “top heavy” and thus ineffective in conducting the daily duties expected of the police. Furthermore, many leaders inside the Ministry of Interior were guilty of human rights violations and other forms of blackmail and corruption. There was an obvious need to reorganize and repair this broken ministry.
MOI began a Rank Reform initiative in October 2005 to completely overhaul and replace its existing leadership structure and composition. The United Nations and ISAF forces conducted background checks on all eligible candidates in attempt to thwart the acceptance of MOI leaders with past human rights violations or records of corruption. Concurrent with rank reform, salary reform was also implemented to match their pay with that of their equivalent counterparts in the Afghan National Army who had been receiving higher pay from their inception.
Despite rank and pay reform, it is still very common to see a disproportionate level of senior-ranking officers within the police force. Although these officers have been "reformed" and their rank and pay adjusted to "sergeant", for example, they will still wear the rank of "captain", or whatever they feel is appropriate, in an effort to retain more authority. Corruption, bribery and treason are also still very common in the national police.
Widespread corruption in all levels of the ANP has long been a major problem for the combating of the Taliban insurgency. It was reported in 2008 that Taliban fighters of both high and low rank have been able to quickly buy their release from police custody with bribes ranging from $100–$10,000.Drug use, defections to the Taliban and sexual harassment of female officers within the ANP were also reported. Due to the high level of corruption, the Afghan government began to send the relatively un-corrupted Afghan National Army to more sensitive scenarios. In January 2013, Hakim Shujayee, a Hazara police commander in Uruzgan Province was accused by higher authorities of killing 121 local people. He fled to Ghazni Province and the Minister of the Interior promised to bring him into custody very shortly.
It was reported in February 2010 that police in Afghanistan are largely illiterate, approximately 17 percent of them tested positive for illegal drugs, and they were widely accused of demanding bribes.Attempts to build a credible Afghan police force were faltering badly, according to NATO officials, making it difficult to build a capable national force.
The number of the Afghan National Police was reported at 157,000 in September 2013,which is expected to reach 160,000 by the end of 2014.
The primary vehicle of the ANP is the four-wheel drive, diesel, 4-door Ford Ranger (and Ranger SORVs), provided by the United States by the thousands. Other vehicles include Humvees, diesel-powered variants of the U.S. consumer Nissan Frontiers, Toyota Hilux pickup trucks imported from Thailand, and Volkswagen Transporter T4/Eurovans, as well as Yamaha motorcycles donated by Japan. Older vehicles, like the UAZ-469 all-terrain vehicle, were obtained from the Soviet Union.
Uniforms and body armour are sometimes mismatched and poorly distributed. Most police personnel are issued at least one uniform that is traded out for warmer/cooler uniforms depending on the season. It is common to find a varying array of blue, green and gray uniforms amongst the police due to different manufacturers and the rapid growing of the force with many people joining. Some police have resorted to having their own uniforms custom made. Body armour and helmets are seldom given to individual soldiers and are often given out on an as-needed basis. The composition of this equipment varies between American, Russian and Chinese military grade equipment to 3rd party equipment that provides little-to-no real protection. Plans to upgrade weapons and uniform are being drafted by the Afghan government. Typically the ANP badge is worn on one shoulder and Afghanistan's flag on the other.
In August 2010, an order was placed for 2,526 M1152A1 Humvees with B2 armor kits, for the Afghan National Police and the Army.
The Afghan Armed Forces are the military forces of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. While the armed forces de jure still exists, de facto it was effectively dissolved on 15 August 2021 after the fall of Kabul to the Taliban and the remnants of the military regrouping as the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan. They consist of the Afghan National Army and the Afghan Air Force. The President of Afghanistan is the Commander-in-Chief of the Afghan Armed Forces, who are administratively controlled through the Ministry of Defense. Before the Fall of Kabul, they had major bases and small outposts all across Afghanistan, including in the provinces of Badakhshan, Balkh, Helmand, Herat, Kabul, Kandahar, Nangarhar and Parwan, as well as in the cities of Kunduz, Ghazni, Gardez, Khost, Fayzabad, Farah and Zaranj.
The Afghan National Army was the land warfare branch of the Afghan Armed Forces. The Army's roots could be traced back to the early 18th century when the Hotak dynasty was established in Kandahar followed by Ahmad Shah Durrani's rise to power. It was reorganized in 1880 during Emir Abdur Rahman Khan's reign. Afghanistan remained neutral during the First and Second World Wars. From the 1960s to the early 1990s, the Afghan Army was equipped by the Soviet Union.
Kunduz or Qunduz is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, located in the northern part of the country next to Tajikistan. The population of the province is around 1,136,677, which is mostly a tribal society; it is one of Afghanistan's most ethnically diverse provinces with many different ethnicities in large numbers living there. The city of Kunduz serves as the capital of the province. It borders the provinces of Takhar, Baghlan, Samangan and Balkh, as well as the Khatlon Region of Tajikistan. The Kunduz Airport is located next to the provincial capital.
Jowzjan, sometimes spelled as Jawzjan or Jozjan, is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan, located in the north of the country bordering neighboring Turkmenistan. The province is divided into 11 districts and contains hundreds of villages. It has a population of about 613,481, which is multi-ethnic and mostly agriculturalists. Sheberghan is the capital of Jozjan province.
Logar is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan located in the eastern section of the country. It is divided into seven districts and contains hundreds of villages. Puli Alam is the capital of the province.
Nangarhār also called Nangrahar or Ningrahar, is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, located in the eastern part of the country and bordering Logar, Kabul, Laghman and Kunar provinces as well as an international border with Pakistan. It is divided into twenty-two districts and has a population of about 1,735,531, the third highest of the country's 34 provinces. The city of Jalalabad is the capital of Nangarhar province.
Sar-e Pol, also spelled Sari Pul, is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan, located in the north of the country. It borders Jowzjan and Balkh to the west and north, Ghor to the south, and Samangan to the east. The province is divided into 7 districts and contains 896 villages. It has a population of about 632,000, which is multi-ethnic and mostly a tribal society. The province was created in 1988, with the support of northern Afghan politician Sayed Nasim Mihanparast. The city of Sar-e Pol serves as the provincial capital.
Maidan Wardak Province, also called Maidan Wardag or Wardak, is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, located in the central region of Afghanistan. It is divided into eight districts and has a population of approximately 671,817. The capital of the province is Maidan Shar, while the most populous district in the province is Saydabad District.
Bismillah Khan Mohammadi, or Bismillah Khan, is an Afghan politician and the de jure Defense Minister of Afghanistan. From 2002 to 2010, he served as Chief of Staff of the Afghan National Army, and from 2010 to 2012 he held the post of Interior Minister of Afghanistan. He has an anti-Taliban background and once served as a senior commander under Ahmad Shah Massoud. Despite the fall of Kabul to the Taliban in August 2021, Mohammadi remains the Minister of Defense as part of the government of the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan.
Law enforcement in Afghanistan is one of three major components of the nation's criminal justice system, along with courts and corrections. The National Directorate of Security (NDS) is the intelligence agency of the government of Afghanistan. The Afghan National Police, which includes the Afghan Border Police and the Afghan National Civil Order Police, is the police force of Afghanistan with jurisdiction that covers the entire 34 provinces of the country.
The Ministry of Interior Affairs was headquartered in Kabul, Afghanistan, and was responsible for law enforcement, civil order and fighting crime. The Ministry maintained the Afghan National Police, the General Command of Police Special Units and the General Directorate of Prisons and Detention Centers (GDPDC).
The Combined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan is a multinational, U.S. led, military organization during the War in Afghanistan.
Mohammed Daud Daud, also known as General Daud Daud, an ethnic Tajik, was the police chief in northern Afghanistan and the commander of the 303 Pamir Corps. He was an opponent of the Afghan Taliban.
The Afghan National Civil Order Force (ANCOF), formerly known as the Afghan National Civil Order Police (ANCOP), was a Afghan National Army (ANA) force responsible for civil order and counterinsurgency. In March 2018, most of the ANCOP personnel of the Afghan National Police were transferred to the Afghan National Army to form the ANCOF with their role remaining the same. The remaining 2,550 ANCOP personnel in the Afghan National Police formed the Public Security Police (PSP). The ANCOF consisted of eight brigades. In June 2020, the ANA began disbanding the ANCOF brigades with personnel to be integrated into ANA Corps.
The Afghan Border Force (ABF) was responsible for security of Afghanistan's border area with neighboring countries extending up to 30 miles (48 km) into the interior and formed part of the Afghan National Army. In December 2017, most of the Afghan Border Police (ABP) personnel of the Afghan National Police were transferred to the Afghan National Army to form the Afghan Border Force. The ABP retained 4,000 personnel for customs operations at border crossings and international airports such as checking documents of foreigners entering the country or deporting them.
The NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan (NTM-A) was a multinational military organisation, activated in November 2009, tasked with providing a higher-level training for the Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan Air Force (AAF), including defense colleges and academies, as well as being responsible for doctrine development, and training and advising Afghan National Police (ANP). The commanding officers, is dual-hatted and commands both NTM-A and Combined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan (CSTC-A) and reports to Commander ISAF.
Corruption in Afghanistan is a widespread and growing problem in Afghan society. Transparency International's 2017 Corruption Perception Index ranks the country 177th place out of 180 countries.
The Afghan Local Police (ALP) was a US-UK sponsored local law enforcement agency, defence force and militia in Afghanistan as part of the Afghan Ministry of Interior Affairs. Formed primarily as a local defence force against Taliban insurgents its members have no power of arrest and are only authorised to investigate crime if requested to do so by the Afghan National Police (ANP). It was established at the request of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Summer 2010 and is paid for by the United States. Officers undergo three weeks military and police training by ISAF personnel and receive weapons and a uniform. They are intended to defend their villages from insurgent attack and allow the ANP to focus on offensive operations. It was originally intended to function for between two and five years.
EUPOL Afghanistan (2007-2016) was a European Union mission supporting the reform efforts of the Afghan government in building a civilian police service in Afghanistan.
The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan was an Islamic republic that existed between 2004 and 2021 during the War in Afghanistan. It was established in 2004 after the 2001 United States invasion of Afghanistan captured most of the country from the Taliban-led Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. It lost control of the majority of the country to the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in August 2021, culminating in the loss of Kabul on 15 August 2021.
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