Global Terrorism Index 2020 Marks Afghanistan to be the most impacted nation by terrorism, the country was subjected to 26 world’s terrorist attacks out of 50 worst terrorizing incidents.

According to the report, while deaths caused by terrorism declined in 2019, the Taliban still remains the deadliest terrorist group in the region.

GTI has been active for eight years and is developed by the leading think tank institute of economics and peace IEP, their reports provide a comprehensive resource on terrorism trends globally.

Peace talks in Afghanistan have a substantial impact on terrorist activity, but still, terrorism is active in the region, According to GTI 2020.

The global economic impact of terrorism in 2019 has cost 26.4 billion, 25% lower than the war expenditures of 2018,  16.7% of Afghanistan’s GDP was impacted by war, making it highest in the rank.

10 countries were accounted for deaths from terrorism in 2019, most of the deaths in a single country were recorded in Afghanistan, 41% of deaths connected to a terrorism incident.

A very slight improvement since 2018, that the country was accounted for 45% of terrorist-act related deaths.

“The fall in deaths in Afghanistan is particularly noticeable given its recent history,” and “Since the peak of violence in 2018, deaths have fallen by just over 22 percent in a year. This reduction was driven by a decline in terrorist deaths attributed to the Taliban and the Khorasan Chapter of the Islamic State (IS-K) which fell by 18 and 61 percent respectively.” Read the report.

IS-K faced significant losses in Kunar and Nangarhar provinces after offensive attacks by the coalition forces, despite fall 2019 was still the deadliest year on record.

Leading the rank as the deadliest terrorist group Taliban were followed by IS-K Islamic state Khorasan as the second deadliest group.

After the fall of the Taliban in 2001, their fighters regrouped throughout Pakistan border and since led an insurgency against the Afghan government and U.S led Resolute Support mission previously known as ISAF, and steadily regained territories in the country, as of January 2019 Taliban controlled 10 percent of the people living in the areas under the Taliban.

TTP is reported to have been responsible for 73 deaths and 30 attacks in Pakistan as of 2019, showing Taliban presence outside of the Afghan borders.

It is written in the report that, “in January 2019, the Taliban committed their deadliest terror attack of the year when a suicide bomber and armed assailants targeted a National Directorate for Security (NDS) base in Maydan Shahr district, Wardak, Afghanistan,”, killing at least 129 people and 54 others wounded.

Afghanistan remains most impacted for the second consecutive years, Taliban have been held responsible for 87% of the battle incidents, according to the report.

As deaths declined by 22 percent, the toll reaches 5, 725 individuals and “While this reduction in the number of deaths provides some optimism, it is the second-highest number of deaths recorded from terrorism in Afghanistan since the 2001 US-led invasion.”

Taliban had widespread activity across 34 provinces, and deaths recorded in every province except Panjshir, largest death toll by the group was recorded in Kunduz in 2019, at least 500 deaths a 77 percent increase from the prior year.  

The report indicates IS-K is believed to still have sleeper cells in cities such as Kabul and Nangarhar and added that “The presence of the Khorasan Chapter continues to challenge the Taliban. In 2019, the Khorasan Chapter was active in seven provinces, compared to the Taliban who conducted terror attacks across all of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces. 

“Sixteen clashes were recorded between the Taliban and the Khorasan Chapter in 2019, mostly in Kunar and Nangarhar provinces,” since the group’s inception in 2015.

No country in the world experienced the cost of terrorism bigger than 4% of its GDP.

Author

  • Mohammad Haroon Alim holds a BBA degree from Kardan University. He works as a sub-editor for Khaama Press.