Anfragebeantwortung zu Afghanistan: Lage von Buben (Informationen zu Kinderheimen/Waisenhäusern; Zwangsrekrutierung; Zwangsarbeit; Bildungsmöglichkeiten abseits von Koranschulen; Situation von Rückkehrern aus dem Iran ohne familiären Anschluss) [a-11852]

8. April 2022

Das vorliegende Dokument beruht auf einer zeitlich begrenzten Recherche in öffentlich zugänglichen Dokumenten, die ACCORD derzeit zur Verfügung stehen sowie gegebenenfalls auf Auskünften von Expert·innen und wurde in Übereinstimmung mit den Standards von ACCORD und den Common EU Guidelines for processing Country of Origin Information (COI) erstellt.

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Informationen zu Kinderheimen und Waisenhäusern           


Zwangsarbeit und Schutz vor Ausbeutung    

Bildungsmöglichkeiten abseits von Koranschulen     

Situation von (minderjährigen) Rückkehrern aus dem Iran ohne familiären Anschluss            

Quellen: (Zugriff auf alle Quellen am 7. April 2022) 

Die folgenden Ausschnitte aus ausgewählten Quellen enthalten Informationen zu oben genannter Fragestellung (Zugriff auf alle Quellen am 8. April 2022):

Informationen zu Kinderheimen und Waisenhäusern

Das Finnish Immigration Service, eine Einrichtung innerhalb des finnischen Innenministeriums, die für die Entscheidungsfindung im Rahmen von Asylverfahren zuständig ist, hat im Rahmen einer Fact-Finding-Mission nach Afghanistan am 9. April 2019 ein Interview mit UNHCR in Kabul geführt und folgende Informationen zu Waisenhäusern in seinem Bericht vom Oktober 2019 veröffentlicht:

„According to UNHCR, there are some governmental services but they are very limited, as the government relies on the international community with these cases. There are some governmental orphanages in Afghanistan, but they are very low quality. There is corruption and abuse of children in some orphanages. UNHCR further added that the children in the orphanages are barely being fed and they cannot access health care or education. The orphanages may even make children more vulnerable than they were in the first place.” (Finnish Immigration Service, 15. Oktober 2019, S. 18-19)

Das US-Außenministerium (USDOS) schreibt in seinem Menschrechtsbericht vom März 2021 (Beobachtungszeitraum: 2020) folgende Informationen zu Kindern in Waisenhäusern:

„Institutionalized Children: Living conditions for children in orphanages were poor. NGOs reported as many as 80 percent of children between ages four and 18 in orphanages were not orphans but from families unable to provide them with food, shelter, schooling, or all three. Children in orphanages reported mental, physical, and sexual abuse and occasionally were victims of trafficking. They did not have regular access to running water, heating in winter, indoor plumbing, health-care services, recreational facilities, or education.” (USDOS, 30. März 2021, Section 6)

„Children were also subject to forced labor in orphanages run by NGOs and overseen by the government.” (USDOS, 30. März 2021, Section 7c)

Der Jahresbericht zu Menschenhandel des USDOS vom Juli 2021 (Beobachtungszeitraum: April 2020 bis März 2021) beinhaltet folgende Informationen zu Waisenhäusern:

„At times, the government placed child trafficking victims in orphanages, and some orphanages subjected children to trafficking. Additionally, in the absence of sufficient shelters for boys, authorities detained abused boys and placed them in juvenile rehabilitation centers. […] Some orphanages run by NGOs and overseen by the government subjected children to trafficking.” (USDOS, 1. Juli 2021)

Im November 2020 veröffentlich die Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC), eine nationale Menschenrechtsinstitution Afghanistans, deren Aufgaben die Förderung, der Schutz und die Überwachung von Menschenrechten sowie die Untersuchung von Menschenrechtsverletzungen sind, einen Bericht, der folgende Informationen zu den Auswirkungen der COVID-19-Pandemie auf Kinder in Waisenhäusern enthält:

Impact of Covid-19 Pandemic on Children in Orphanages

The findings of this study show that of 9,794 children who were in orphanages before the Coronavirus outbreak, 8,133 of them were handed over to their families or relatives, and only 1,661 of them remained and were quarantined in the orphanages.” (AIHRC, 21. November 2020)

Im November 2021 veröffentlicht The Conversation, ein internationales Netzwerk aus Wissenschaftler·innen und Journalist·innen mit Hauptsitz in Australien, die in Zusammenarbeit forschungsbasierte Nachrichten herausgeben, folgende Informationen zu Waisenhäusern in Afghanistan nach der Machtübernahme durch die Taliban:

„Months after the Taliban’s return in Afghanistan, there are grave concerns about the state of the country, and in particular, the lives of children. […] Many children also lost their parents to violence during the long years of conflict. In response, orphanages play an important role in Afghanistan. However, the care these institutions provide is now compromised due to a lack of external and domestic funding. Some orphanages are even reducing the amount of food they can give children.” (The Conversation, 2. November 2021)

Die internationale Nachrichtenagentur Reuters berichtet im Oktober 2021 zur finanziellen und humanitären Lage eines Waisenhauses in Kabul nach der Machtübernahme der Taliban:

„Ahmad Khalil Mayan, programme director at a large Kabul orphanage, says he is cutting back on the amount of fruit and meat he gives the children each week because the home is running out of money. For the last two months, since the Afghan Taliban seized control of the country and millions of dollars in aid suddenly dried up, he has been desperately calling and emailing donors, both foreign and local, who supported him before. ‘Unfortunately, most of them have left the country - Afghan donors, foreign donors, embassies. When I call them or email them, no one is answering me,’ Mayan, 40, told Reuters at the sprawling Shamsa Children's Village in the north of the capital. ‘We are now trying to run the place with very little money and with little food,’ he added. There are around 130 children at the orphanage aged from three years upwards. It has been operational for more than a decade, and provides shelter for those who have lost both parents or just one who cannot afford to keep them. […] Orphanages like this play an outsize role in Afghanistan, where tens of thousands of civilians have been killed in wars that have ravaged the country for more than 40 years. The lack of funding, which has hit charities, non-governmental organisations and ordinary Afghans since the hardline Islamist Taliban movement took back control of the country, is forcing Mayan into tough choices. The orphanage tried to send a few children back to relatives who were comparatively well off, but one by one they have returned. Mayan said staff have had to reduce food portions and limit the types of food children eat. ‘Before we were providing them twice a week fruit and twice a week meat, but we cut those items to just once a week or maybe not even (that much).’ […] Compounding the orphanage's problems is the weekly limit of $200 on bank withdrawals to avoid a run on hard currency, meaning access to funds is not enough to support the children and staff. Mayan fears that if the situation continues, the orphanage will not be able to function much longer. That would be devastating for the children, who receive mathematics, English and computer lessons as well as physical education, not to mention food and shelter.” (Reuters, 15. Oktober 2021)

Ebenfalls im Oktober 2021 berichtet Gandhara, die in Afghanistan und Pakistan als Teil der vom Kongress der Vereinigten Staaten finanzieren Rundfunkorganisation Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) operiert, von Waisenkindern, die in Kabul verhungert seien:

„An ethnic Hazara political leader and former member of Afghanistan's parliament says the bodies of eight orphan children who starved to death have been found on the west side of Kabul. In a statement posted to Facebook on October 24, Mohammad Mohaqiq said the children died in a neighborhood in Kabul's 13th district about three weeks ago. He said they were buried by a local mullah and by residents of the neighborhood where they were found. A local mullah named Mohammad Ali Bamiani provided details about the deaths of the children, saying the eldest was about eight years old and the youngest was an 18-month-old infant. ‘They had no one,’ Bamiani said. ‘Their parents were both dead and they had no close relatives.’ Bamiani said he went into the house where the bodies of the children had been discovered. He said ‘they were so hungry that they couldn't even stretch their legs.’“ (Gandhara, 24. Oktober 2021)

TRT World, ein türkischer regierungsnaher Nachrichtensender, der in englischer Sprache sendet, berichtet im November 2021 zu Waisenhäusern im Rahmen der wirtschaftlichen Krise nach der Machtübernahme der Taliban:

„Afghanistan’s deepening economic crisis since the Taliban takeover has taken its toll on the country’s orphanages. Four out of ten children in Afghanistan’s orphanages are being sent to live with their relatives as the growing economic crisis incapacitates institutions, leaving thousands of children without shelter. Those who stayed in are the ones with no one to take care of them. Some of them have relatives, but they either do not want to take them in, or are not capable of caring for them. Before the Taliban takeover, there were 9,319 children housed in Afghan orphanages. However, in the wake of the economic crisis, that number fell to 3,566 with many children being sent away. There are a total of 68 orphanages in Afghanistan, publicly and privately owned, and 26 of those have been shut down due to the economic crisis, and several other orphanages are facing the same fate with the ongoing crisis. […]

Struggling to keep doors open

The crisis in Afghanistan has left orphanages struggling to keep the lights on, with frequent power outages and generators falling short of their needs. Running water is also hard to find in orphanages, and troubles extend to acquiring drinkable water. Moreover, the orphanage buildings are in poor condition, plagued by serious hygiene problems in rooms and dining halls. ‘We cannot meet the daily needs of children such as food, clothes and medical supplies in a short period of time as we did in the past,’ the manager of Kabul’s Teyiye Mesken orphanage, Mucibi Rahman Hotak, said. ‘We need everything from food to winter materials such as coal and clothes to keep them warm, and stationery for their education,’ he added. Authorities also reported that the personnel in orphanages had been having trouble getting their wages from the time of the previous government, and that problem was aggravated with Taliban’s takeover. Since the Taliban seized power, orphanage personnel, including the country's director of orphanages Feyzan Ahmed Kaker, have only received a month’s wage. Nevertheless, the personnel see their job as a religious obligation and continue their work according to Kaker, who added that some children were returning to the orphanages with schools opening for primary and secondary education ‘If resources are provided and the economic situation improves, children sent to their relatives can apply to orphanages again,’ he told AA. ‘Even now, some children are applying, but we cannot accept them due to insufficient resources and operations of orphanages in some provinces.’

Need for aid

After seizing power, Taliban officials visited Afghanistan’s orphanages and promised to provide support, but a concrete solution has not yet been offered. Orphanages do not receive any amount of financial assistance from the Taliban government, and international aid was cut when the Taliban seized power. ’Some of our problems are from the previous government’s rule, and they still persist. ... We had contacted some charities and philanthropists who helped us to some extent. We are still managing with these aids,’ said Kaker. […] However, despite its necessity, aid is not sufficient according to authorities. There is also a need for the Taliban administration to step in and develop a concrete and continuous institutional policy with international aid organisations. ’We want the Taliban government to set a clear policy for protecting the children,’ said Kaker” (TRT World, 17. November 2021)

Im Dezember 2021 schreibt die türkische staatliche Nachrichtenagentur Anadolu Agency (AA) folgendes zu Waisenhäusern in Afghanistan:

„Afghanistan has 68 state-run and private orphanages, although 26 of them have closed due to the country's economic woes. Others will close as well if the country's financial troubles persist. Orphanages in the country are grappling with the crisis, particularly food shortages after the US blocked over $9 billion of the country's Central Bank reserves and international donors halted humanitarian aid. After more than 40 years of political turbulence and the killing of tens of thousands of civilians in wars, the country has been facing numerous hardships, including economic challenges since the Taliban took power in August.[…] Since the suspension of international aid, orphanages have faced numerous challenges, including a lack of food, clothes, fuel, medical, and stationery supplies, as the cash-strapped Taliban administration is unable to give them meals such as meat, milk, fruit, and vegetables. While the administration of the Alawuddin Orphanage tries to keep the orphanage running on a limited budget, it has appealed to national and international organizations for ‘help.’ The buildings' electrical and heating systems are not working properly. Electricity is routinely turned off, and there is no fuel for the generator, causing major problems with drinking water supplies. The stench of not cleaning the toilets in the rooms has permeated throughout the building. Thick duvets are utilized in the winter weather, but the rooms are cold, especially in the evenings, due to the power outage and fuel shortage.” (AA, 4. Dezember 2021)

Der britische Fernsehsender ITV berichtet im Rahmen seines Nachrichtenprogramms „ITV News“ im Jänner 2022 folgendes zur Lage von Waisenhäusern in Afghanistan:

„Afghanistan is swelling with orphans, but children's homes are struggling to care for them, ITV News Correspondent John Ray reports. Nowab, whose father was a Taliban fighter, and Sayed, whose father died as an Afghan army soldier, now live in the same orphanage despite coming from opposing sides of the conflict. […] They are two of Afghanistan's lost children as the country deals with a multitude of orphans amid a broken care system for children. […] The situation in Afghanistan is so dire, that one father offered to sell his daughter to an ITV News team as he can no longer feed her and malnourished babies struggle for life in hospitals which lack medicines. […] And every day, desperate parents have been turning up at Taimaskan Boy's Home to try to give their children a home there. But they are being turned away due to a lack of funding. About 300 boys are being looked after there but there is room for many, many more. Staff from the home tell ITV News there is nothing they can do to help and they have not been paid for three of the past five months. There are many other children's homes that have closed for good.” (ITV News, 19. Jänner 2022)

Im Februar 2022 berichtet der afghanische Nachrichtensender TOLO News folgendes zur Anzahl der noch operierenden Waisenhäuser in Afghanistan:

„Officials said that public orphanages have faced many challenges over the past six months. While the number of orphans and unsupervised children is increasing across Afghanistan, officials said that only 9 out of 68 public orphanages are operating in the country. Mohammad Yunus Sediqi, head of the media department at the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, said that 36 private orphanages are open in the country. ‘Currently nine public (government) orphanages are open as are 36 private ones. Efforts are underway to reopen the public orphanages if there is a budget for us.’” (TOLO News, 1. Februar 2022)

Das Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge (BAMF), eine Bundesbehörde Deutschlands, die für die Durchführung von Asylverfahren und die Zuerkennung des Flüchtlingsschutzes zuständige ist, berichtet in seinem Briefing Notes vom Februar 2022 ebenfalls zur Zahl der Waisenhäuser in Afghanistan:

„Ein Vertreter des Ministeriums für Arbeit und Soziales erklärte am 01.02.22, dass aktuell nur neun der 68 staatlichen Waisenhäuser geöffnet seien. Die Waisenhäuser sollen wiedereröffnet werden, wenn finanzielle Mittel verfügbar sind. 36 private Waisenhäuser sind weiterhin in Betrieb” (BAMF, 7. Februar 2022, S. 2)

Ein älterer Bericht aus dem Jahr 2018 zur Lage von Kindern in Afghanistan des Kinderhilfswerk der Vereinten Nationen (UNICEF), der unter anderem Informationen zu den Aufgabenbereichen der Abteilung für Waisenhäuser („Department for Orphanages“) des Ministeriums für Arbeit und soziale Angelegenheiten (Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, MoLSA) der afghanischen Regierung vor der Machtübernahme der Taliban enthält, kann unter folgendem Link abgerufen werden:

·      UNICEF – UN Children's Fund: Child Notice Afghanistan; 2018, 2018


In einem Entscheidungstext des Bundesverwaltungsgerichts (BVwG) vom Jänner 2022 finden sich folgende Informationen zur Rekrutierung Minderjähriger:

„Das Problem der Rekrutierung von Kindern, einschließlich Zwangsrekrutierung sowie Entführungen und sexueller Missbrauch von Minderjährigen durch regierungsfeindliche Gruppen, Milizen oder afghanische Sicherheitskräfte bestand bis zur Übernahme der Taliban weiter. Für 2020 ist die Rekrutierung von insgesamt 196 Jungen belegt, davon 172 durch die Taliban, die Kinder u. a. für Selbstmordattentate einsetzen. Weitere 17 Vorfälle gingen auf das Konto der staatlichen Sicherheitskräfte (AA 16.7.2021).“ (BVwG, 11. Jänner 2022, S. 57)

Zum Einsatz von Kindersoldaten durch die Taliban schreibt Human Rights Watch (HRW) im September 2021:

„For more than two decades, the Taliban have put children on the front lines of Afghanistan’s armed conflicts. They have used children as fighters, to plant and detonate improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and as suicide bombers. Thousands of children may remain in their ranks today.

The Taliban’s current efforts to establish a government in Afghanistan provide an opportunity for the international community to push for an end to child recruitment, and for the release of children from Taliban forces.

Taliban commanders long have relied on madrasas, or Islamic religious schools, to train and provide children as soldiers. Boys as young as 6 were indoctrinated, and by age 13, often had learned to use firearms. Children between 13 and 17 were often used to fight. Other parties to the conflict, including the U.S.-backed Afghan government and pro-government forces, reportedly also recruited and used children.

The Taliban used children to carry out suicide and other dangerous attacks, often recruiting them through deception, with promises of money or other incentives, and threats. One 15-year-old boy told United Nations investigators that a Taliban commander ordered him to detonate explosives against Afghan police, promising him that if he carried out the mission, he would go to paradise and receive ‘huge rewards.’ When the boy resisted, the commander threatened to kill the boy and his parents. […]

The Taliban have denied that they use children in ‘jihadic operations’ and their code of conduct states that ‘boys without beards’ are not allowed in military centers. Nevertheless, the U.N. has verified hundreds of individual cases in which the Taliban have recruited and used children in recent years, including a sharp spike in 2020, and warned that the true figures are likely much higher.

Crucially, the Taliban have demonstrated some sensitivity to accusations of child recruitment. In 2019, for example, the Taliban’s Commission for the Prevention of Civilian Casualties and Complaints secured the release of 14 boys from their ranks following community complaints.

The U.S.-backed former Afghan government and pro-government forces also bear responsibility for recruiting and using children to fight. In addition, the former government’s harsh treatment of children suspected of Taliban involvement most likely fueled anti-government resentment. Instead of providing children with rehabilitation assistance, as international law requires, security forces systematically detained and tortured hundreds of children — some as young as 10 — for suspected association with armed groups. U.N. investigations found that nearly 44 percent of children detained for conflict-related charges reported torture — a higher rate than for adult detainees. We do not know what has happened to these children.” (HRW, 20. September 2021)

In einem Bericht zu Gefährdungsprofilen vom 31. Oktober 2021 erwähnt die Schweizerische Flüchtlingshilfe (SFH) auch das Thema der Zwangsrekrutierungen:

Zwangsrekrutierung von Kindern, Jugendlichen und Männern im wehrfähigen Alter. Kinder wurden auch 2020 seitens der Taliban, der afghanischen Sicherheitskräfte sowie regierungsnahen und regierungsfeindlichen bewaffneten Gruppen rekrutiert und sowohl für Kampf- als auch für Dienstfunktionen oder sexuelle Zwecke missbraucht. Gemäss EASO kommt es nur in Ausnahmefällen zu Zwangsrekrutierung seitens der Taliban. Wehren sich Personen dagegen, kann es allerdings schwerwiegende Folgen haben, bis hin zu schweren Körperstrafen oder Tötungen. Der IS/Daesh versucht in erster Linie, ehemalige Taliban- und Al Kaida-Kämpfer zu rekrutieren, insbesondere solche, die den Friedensprozess mit den USA und der afghanischen Regierung abgelehnt haben. Zudem rekrutiert er auch aktiv Kinder.“ (SFH, 31. Oktober 2021, S. 15)

Während eines COI-Webinars erläuterten Katja Mielke, Senior Researcher am Bonn International Centre for Conflict Studies, und Emran Feroz, in und zu Afghanistan arbeitender Journalist und Buchautor, im Februar 2022 zu Zwangsrekrutierungen das Folgende:

„Inwiefern droht Zwangsrekrutierung durch die Taliban bzw. Konsequenzen, wenn man sich vor Jahren der Zwangsrekrutierung entzogen hat?

Katja Mielke: Mullah Yaqoob, der Verteidigungsminister, hat verkündet, dass die Taliban vorhaben, die Armee des islamischen Emirats auf 110.000 Mann Sollstärke auszubauen. Und soweit ich weiß, haben sie Offenheit signalisiert, Beschäftigte der vorherigen Sicherheitskräfte, also vor allem was ‚gemeine‘ Soldaten betrifft, weiterhin zu beschäftigen. Angesichts der Tatsache, dass die Taliban wahrscheinlich auch als Aufstandsbewegung annähernd so viele Leute als Kämpfer bezahlt hatten, kann ich mir vorstellen, dass es für viele Afghanen erst einmal die einzige Perspektive ist, um Geld zu verdienen. Zwangsrekrutierungen werden insofern gar nicht nötig sein. Die Sicherheitslage gestaltet sich nun anders als zuvor, als das Fußvolk der afghanischen Armee gewissermaßen verfeuert wurde. Deshalb scheint aktuell die Armeezugehörigkeit vielleicht sogar ein relativ attraktiver Posten zu sein.

Emran Feroz: In Bezug zu jenen Personen, die sich damals der Zwangsrekrutierung, also dem Dschihad-Aufruf der Taliban, entzogen haben, weiß ich auch nicht, wie mit diesen Personen aktuell vorgegangen wird. Aber bei derartigen Fragen muss man generell immer überlegen, wie sich das Regime verhalten wird, wenn es sich erst einmal mehr manifestiert hat, wenn das System gefestigter ist. Da stellt sich schon die Frage, ob dann wirklich jeder so ungeschoren davonkommt oder nicht, würde ich sagen.“ (ACCORD, März 2022, S. 32)

Das Flüchtlingshochkommissariat der Vereinten Nationen (UNHCR) verweist im Oktober 2021 auf Gesprächspartner·innen im Feld und führt folgende Informationen zu Zwangsrekrutierung an:

„According to interlocutors in the field, both Taliban/IEA/de facto authorities and ISKP recruit widely and use children in their ranks.” (UNHCR, Oktober 2021, S. 8)

Ein Bericht des UNO-Generalsekretärs vom Juli 2021 beinhaltet die folgenden Informationen zur Rekrutierung von Minderjährigen:

„20. […] Notwithstanding monitoring and verification constraints owing to sensitivities around such cases, a concerning increase in recruitment and use, to 260 children, was verified, which may have been exacerbated by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Also of concern, the country task force verified elevated numbers of attacks on schools (132), hospitals (165) and protected persons in relation to schools and/or hospitals, which, with a total of 297 attacks, was among the three categories of grave violations with the most verified violations.


22. The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic during the reporting period exacerbated children’s vulnerabilities and contributed to further strain on health care, while increasing poverty, unemployment and food insecurity, all potential drivers for increased child recruitment and use, abduction and sexual violence against children.

23. Owing to monitoring and verification challenges, the data contained in the present report are believed to underrepresent the actual numbers of grave violations.


24. The country task force verified the recruitment and use of 260 boys, mainly in the northern region (161), the north-eastern region (56) and the central highlands region (13). There was a sharp increase from 2019 (64) to 2020 (196).

25. The Taliban were responsible for the recruitment and use of 230 children (88 per cent), all used in combat roles, for instance, to plant improvised explosive devices, to carry out suicide attacks and to participate in hostilities against government forces, as a result of which some were killed or maimed.

26. The Afghan National Defence and Security Forces were responsible for the recruitment and use of 22 boys, attributed to the Afghan National Police (8), Afghan National Army Territorial Force (4), the Afghan Local Police (1), and the Afghan Local Police and pro-government militias jointly (9). In addition, the recruitment and use of eight boys was attributed to pro-government militias. Children aged from 13 to 17 years were used in combat and support roles, as well as for sexual purposes, such as bacha bazi, a practice whereby boys are exploited by wealthy or powerful men for entertainment, in particular for dancing and sexual activities.

27. The country task force documented the recruitment and use of 413 children (412 boys and 1 girl), mainly by armed groups, that it could not verify by the time of writing owing to sensitivities and concerns for the safety of the victims, families and sources, as well as access limitations.

28. Boys were more likely to be recruited and used than girls, owing partly to cultural norms and religious beliefs. Poverty was also a significant push and pull factor, and boys were more likely to bear the responsibility for meeting the household’s economic needs. Girls were often subjected to early marriages and engaged in domestic labour or other household work and activities. Those trends were exacerbated in 2020 owing to the socioeconomic impact of the measures taken in response to COVID-19, including lockdowns.” (UN Security Council, 16. Juli 2021, S. 5-6)

Im Jänner 2022 führt das Büro der Vereinten Nationen für die Koordinierung humanitärer Angelegenheiten (UN OCHA) folgende Zahlen zur Rekrutierung von Kindern an:

„With 68 abductions and 78 reported incidents of child recruitment into armed forces or groups in the last year, the safety, wellbeing, and proper development of children is negatively impacted.” (UN OCHA, 7. Jänner 2022, S. 37)

Der Jahresbericht zu Menschenhandel des US-Außenministeriums (USDOS) vom Juli 2021 (Beobachtungszeitraum: April 2020 bis März 2021) beinhaltet zur strafrechtlichen Verfolgung der Rekrutierung von Kindern Folgendes:

„The government has never prosecuted any military or police officials for recruitment or use of child soldiers.” (USDOS, 1. Juli 2021)

In seinem Jahresbericht zu Kinderarbeit (Beobachtungszeitraum: 2020) hält das US Department of Labor (USDOL) im September 2021 das Folgende fest:

„In 2020, the government arrested, detained, and prosecuted children for terrorism-related crimes, including some younger than age 12, who had been forcibly recruited by non-state armed groups. Furthermore, authorities considered some child trafficking victims, especially those engaged in bacha bazi or armed conflict, as criminals, housing them in juvenile detention centers and subjecting them to torture and other forms of ill treatment rather than referring them to victim support services. […]

In 2020, the use of boys for bacha bazi remained prevalent. For example, at least 10 boys between the ages of 14 and 19 were alleged to have been sexually exploited while working as bodyguards or drivers for an Afghan National Defense and Security Force (ANDSF) commander in the central Highlands region. In Kandahar, a 13-year-old boy was reportedly sexually assaulted as a bacha bazi crime by seven members of the ANP, resulting in the death of the child, and these officers were convicted of and sentenced for these crimes. In Helmand province, a human rights organization received reports of the continued practice of bacha bazi by the members of the ANP. During the reporting period, there was also a meaningful increase in the number of other allegations of the recruitment of children by ANDSF, ANP, and ALP (which was disbanded in September 2020) for not only use in armed conflict (as bodyguards, checkpoint guards, and drivers), but also for the purposes of bacha bazi. […]

In 2020, armed groups and Afghan Government-affiliated military entities recruited children for engagement in combat and security operations, including 172 by the Taliban, 5 by the ANP, 4 by the Afghan National-Army Territorial Force, and 8 jointly by the ALP and pro-government armed groups. Low rates of birth registration and the falsification of identity documents contributed to the problem by making it difficult to determine a recruit’s age. Observers reported that some officials accepted bribes to produce false identity documents that indicated that the recipient boys were older than age 18. Even newly introduced biometrics efforts have not enabled Child Protection Units to entirely restrict children from enlisting in the police force. Nevertheless, the Child Protection Units at ANP recruitment centers prevented the recruitment of at least 187 children. Moreover, the Ministry of Defense prevented the recruitment of more than 5,000 children into the ANDSF throughout the country during the reporting period.” (USDOL, 29. September 2021)

In einem 2020 veröffentlichten Bericht der Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack (GCPEA) (Beobachtungszeitraum: 2017-2019) finden sich folgende Informationen zu Zwangsrekrutierung von Kindern:

„No incidents of child recruitment were reported at school or while children were en route to or from school during the reporting period. However, there was evidence that families at least perceived that recruitment was a risk for their children in and around school settings. […] In addition, GCPEA also received anecdotal evidence that non-state armed groups recruited children from madrassas during the reporting period.” (GCPEA, 2020, S. 102-103)

Die britische Online-Zeitung Byline Times veröffentlichte am 10. Jänner 2022 eine Reportage zur Rekrutierung von Kindern durch die Taliban:

„’My whole reason for coming here was because the Taliban wanted to recruit me,’ Azlan (not his real name) told Byline Times. ‘They come to your house, and the first time, they ask nicely. But if you don’t agree, then they use force.’

Azlan, who originally comes from a province in northern Afghanistan, told this newspaper that he was beaten three times by the Taliban. He eventually came to the UK via a circuitous route in 2015, leaving shortly after the Taliban kidnapped him in a bid to forcibly recruit him.

‘I was there for two days and I told them, I don’t believe in your fight,’ he said. ‘No matter what colour or religion you are, you are human.’

The Taliban beat him so hard that they thought he was dead. Fearing that the next beating would be fatal, his family sent him to Pakistan, Iran, and he then travelled across Europe to the UK.

He told Byline Times that the Taliban took his younger brother, who then disappeared in 2016. Rumours circulated that he had died in a bomb blast. His sister also died in a blast. His father died in 2019, leaving just his mother and his youngest brother, who is now 14.

‘This is the age when they recruit and I will do anything to save him,’ Azlan said. ‘It’s not that I am afraid he will die, but I don’t believe in this fight.’” (Byline Times, 10. Jänner 2022)

Zwangsarbeit und Schutz vor Ausbeutung

In seinem Jahresbericht zu Kinderarbeit (Beobachtungszeitraum: 2020) hält das US Department of Labor (USDOL) im September 2021 das Folgende fest:

„In 2020, Afghanistan made minimal advancement in efforts to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. […] Children in Afghanistan are subjected to the worst forms of child labor, including in commercial sexual exploitation, armed conflict, and forced labor in the production of bricks and carpets, each sometimes as a result of human trafficking. Afghanistan’s labor inspectorate is not authorized to impose penalties for child labor violations, and the government lacks sufficient programs to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. In addition, Afghan law does not sufficiently criminalize forced labor, debt bondage, or the commercial sexual exploitation of girls. […]

Afghan children are victims of human trafficking both domestically and internationally. There were widespread reports of child laborers being subjected to sexual violence within Afghanistan. In Afghanistan, children are also subjected to human trafficking to settle their family’s debt, sometimes as a result of their parents' drug addiction, by being forced to produce bricks or illicit drugs. Some children migrate unaccompanied to engage in child labor. Boys, especially those traveling unaccompanied, were particularly vulnerable to human trafficking, including for work in agriculture and construction. Traffickers in Iran exploit Afghan children in forced labor as beggars and street vendors and in forced criminality, including drug trafficking and smuggling of fuel and tobacco.” (USDOL, 29. September 2021)

BBC News schreibt in einem Artikel vom 17. Jänner 2022 über die Lebensbedingungen von Kindern in Afghanistan:

„Even before the Taliban took control of the country last summer, hundreds of thousands of Afghan children were forced to earn a living because of widespread poverty. In 2018, the United Nations reported that more than two million children in Afghanistan, between the ages of six and 14, performed some type of child work. That could be anything from working in a market, to shining shoes or picking through rubbish. The children's charity Unicef says that before to the COVID-19 pandemic, various factors - including poverty, cultural practices and lack of school facilities - were keeping 4.2 million children out of school. But according to the BBC team in Afghanistan, the current situation means even more children are having to work.” (BBC News, 17. Jänner 2022)

Eine von der Internationale Arbeitsorganisation (ILO) im Jänner 2022 veröffentlichte Folgenabschätzung beinhaltet folgende Informationen zur afghanischen Wirtschaft und den Auswirkungen auf Kinder:

„The worsening economic and jobs crisis could aggravate the child labour situation. The recent Household Income and Expenditure Survey 2019–20 estimated that approximately 1.06 million children aged 5-17 years, 9 per cent of this age group, were involved in child labour. The overall figure masks important differences by gender and area of residence:

-        Child labour has an important gender dimension in Afghanistan. Boys are more likely to be involved in child labour (12.6 per cent) than their female counterparts (5.1 per cent). In absolute numbers, there are more than 770,000 boys and about 300,000 girls in child labour. When the definition of child labour expands to include children carrying out household chores for 21 hours or more per week, the child labour prevalence increases to 13 per cent for both sexes and to almost 12 per cent for girls.

-        Child labour is a predominantly rural phenomenon. Children living in rural areas (9.9 per cent or 839,000) are much more likely to be in child labour compared to those living in urban areas (2.9 per cent or 80,000).

-        Only 40 per cent of children aged 5–17 years were attending school. A large share of children (41 per cent) were neither attending school nor working.

These numbers indicate that efforts need to be intensified and accelerated to meet the SDG 8.7 target: ‘Take immediate and effective measures to eradicate forced labour, end modern slavery and human trafficking and secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour, including recruitment and use of child soldiers, and by 2025 end child labour in all its forms.’

There are no current estimates on the impact that the recent political and socio-economic situation will have on the number of children in child labour. Nonetheless, a rise in the number of working children and a decline of children attending school are expected outcomes of the fragile situation in the country.” (ILO, Jänner 2022, S. 5)

Ein Bericht des UNO-Generalsekretärs vom Jänner 2022 beinhaltet die folgenden Informationen zu Bedenken hinsichtlich des Schutzes von Kindern:

„The ravaged economy has exacerbated the coping mechanisms of families, giving rise to critical concerns for the protection of women and children from exploitation and abuse, including trafficking, the selling of children, child marriage, the recruitment and use of children by armed forces, and child labour.” (UN General Assembly, 28. Jänner 2022, S. 8)

Der UNO-Menschenrechtsrat hält im März 2022 zum Thema Kinderarbeit das Folgende fest:

„As a result of this crisis, people are resorting to harmful coping mechanisms including incurring unsustainable debt burdens. UNICEF has observed an increase in child labour, child marriage, and the sale of children, disproportionately affecting girls.“ (HRC, 4. März 2022, S. 4)

Ein Bericht des australischen Außenministeriums (Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade - DFAT) vom 14. Jänner 2022 beinhaltet die folgenden Informationen:

„Child abuse is a common problem throughout Afghanistan, and may include general neglect, physical abuse, sexual abuse, abandonment, and confined forced labour to pay off family debts.” (DFAT, 14. Jänner 2022, S. 16)

Das Flüchtlingshochkommissariat der Vereinten Nationen (UNHCR) verweist im Oktober 2021 auf die Ergebnisse einer Haushaltsbefragung und führt folgende Informationen zu Kinderarbeit an:

„Food insecurity, acute malnutrition, reduced access to healthcare and scarcity of basic commodities have resulted in a coping crisis forcing households to restore to negative coping strategies, including borrowing money, child labour and selling assets.” (UNHCR, Oktober 2021, S. 2)

„According to the Household Survey data for Q3, borrowing money is the strategy used most often (31%), followed by child labour (15%) – sending children to work locally, in other parts of the country or to neighbouring countries – and selling assets (14%). The same coping mechanisms were prevalent in Q1 and Q2. Other coping mechanisms include use of migration, spending remittances, engaging in hazardous work, recruiting children to armed groups, and forced and child marriage. The prevalence of child marriage was the highest in Helmand Province, followed by Kandahar and Faryab provinces. When the Household survey data is disaggregated based on the respondents gender the three main coping mechanisms remain the same for men and women. Selling assets is the second most reported by men. Child labour is by far the second most reported by women. This difference is most likely linked to unequal access to household assets. […]

Child labour has dramatically worsened from Q1 to Q3. Since January 2021, 27% of Household Survey respondents mentioned that they had to resort to child labour (13% in Q1, 30% in Q2 and 30% in Q3). The highest percentage of respondents reporting child labour is found in Sar-e-Pul, Badakhstan [sic], Faryab, Himand [sic], Nangahar [sic], Nimroz and Bamyan – mostly rural and border provinces relying on agriculture and informal labour with movement to third countries. The worst forms of child labour in Afghanistan include the production of bricks and carpets, work in the agriculture and mining sectors, and work in the streets as beggars, shoe shiners, porters, and garbage collectors.”

(UNHCR, Oktober 2021, S. 7)

Ein im Februar 2022 veröffentlichter Artikel der NGO Save the Children enthält Information zu negativen Bewältigungsstrategien, die Kinderarbeit umfassen:

„Up to one fifth of families in Afghanistan have been forced to send their children out to work as incomes have plummeted in the past six months with an estimated one million children now engaged in child labour, according to new Save the Children research.

A survey of 1,400 households across seven provinces of Afghanistan found that 82% of Afghans have lost income since the collapse of the former government and transition of power last August, with 18% reporting they had no choice but to send their children out to work.

According to Save the Children’s analysis, if just one child in each of these families is being sent to work, then more than one million children in the country are engaged in child labour.” (Save the Children, 14. Februar 2022)

In einem Artikel vom 21. Jänner 2022 widmet sich das afghanischen Online-Nachrichtenportals Hasht-e Subh der steigenden Kinderarbeit in der Provinz Parwan:

Child labor figure in Afghanistan, especially in Parwan province, has risen dramatically since the establishment of the Taliban-led government and the emergence of poverty in the country. The Department of Labor and Social Affairs in Parwan province says it cannot afford to support these children. According to the authority, in Charikar city, the capital city of Parwan province alone, more than 1,700 children are employed in hard labor.

Qudratullah Zakir, the Taliban’s labor and social affairs director in Parwan province, told Hasht-e Subh that out of 1,700 working children, more than 100 were homeless in the town of Charikar, adding that some of them were now funded by the government. According to Zakir, due to the lack of financial resources, the department has handed over some children to some families to be cared for. ‘In the town of Charikar alone, which we surveyed, there are more than 1,700 child laborers,’ he added. ‘We are not currently able to survey working children outside the center of Parwan, but if they are surveyed, there are likely to be thousands of them out-there.’ […]

The head of the Department of Labor and Social Affairs in Parwan province attributes the increase in child labor to recent developments, unemployment, and last year’s floods in Parwan province.” (Hasht-e Subh, 21. Jänner 2022)

Die Nachrichtenwebseite Equal Times schreibt im Februar 2022 Folgendes zum Thema Kinderarbeit in Afghanistan:

„The practice of child labour is in fact illegal in Afghanistan. In April 2010, the country ratified two key treaties in the fight against child labour: ILO Convention 182 on the worst forms of child labour and Convention 138 on minimum age. Under Afghan law, the minimum age of employment is 18. Minors between the ages of 15 and 17 may work under certain conditions, provided that the work is not arduous, requires less than 35 hours per week and constitutes a form of vocational training. Children aged 14 and under are prohibited from working.

Afghanistan’s high incidence of child labour is mainly due to the extreme poverty of its population. The country remains one of the poorest in the world. As Patricia Grossman, Asia director at HRW, tells Equal Times: ‘Some families have no other choice. The Afghan economy, damaged by decades of war, needs help. It’s hard to tell poor populations to simply stop these practices.’

In addition to poverty, lack of access to education in remote and conservative regions compounds the problem of child labour. According to the Afghan authorities, 3.5 million children were out of school in 2017, most of them in rural areas. Half of the children who work stop going to school.

‘Most Afghan child labourers are employed in the agricultural sector,’ says Amanda Bissex, UNICEF regional advisor for child protection in South Asia. ‘The drought that has been raging for the last three years has led to the impoverishment of rural farmers, which has further intensified the problem.’ A significant number of children also work in carpet factories, kilns and mines, not to mention those who engage in unauthorised street trading and begging.

The gap between legislation and reality on the ground is also due to ‘the lack of resources to engage with communities about these practices and the lack of relevant awareness,’ Emma Allen, a research fellow at the Samuel Hall Research Centre, which has an office in Kabul, tells Equal Times.

While the Afghan state, with its very small number of labour inspectors, is limited in its means, this lack of resources is also the result of endemic corruption in the Islamic Republic. Ali [name changed], an official with the NGO War Child Afghanistan, confirms this: ‘Some children who were forced to work in the drug trade were exploited by networks linked to the corrupt Afghan police. It was impossible to criminalise these groups and thus rescue children from this work.’ […]

Afghanistan’s economy was already in dire straits before the Taliban returned to power in 2021 and the subsequent imposition of international sanctions has plunged the country into an even deeper crisis. After the fall of Kabul on 15 August, Washington froze US$9.5 billion in assets belonging to the Afghan Central Bank to prevent them from falling into the hands of the Taliban. Unpaid salaries of civil servants, a slowdown in the economy, limited access to banks and decreased international aid have accelerated poverty in the country.

In addition, many of the humanitarian organisations that provided some support to poor families have reduced or ceased their activities in recent months. As a result, more than 60 per cent of Afghans are now food insecure according to the World Food Programme. According to the United Nations Development Programme, 97 per cent of the population could fall into poverty by spring 2022 if no action is taken. This situation has only served to intensify the practice of child labour. […]

Child labour affects boys and girls in different ways. According to an April 2021 report by the National Statistics and Information Authority (NSIA), twice as many boys as girls are engaged in work outside the home, while girls are mostly confined to work in their homes, rendering them invisible and thus more difficult to assess.

‘They usually work in carpet weaving,’ says Ali of War Child. International organisations like Unicef have set up ‘safe spaces’ for dialogue where girls who work at home can speak openly about their lives. Unfortunately, the impact of such programmes remains limited in Afghanistan, where families rarely allow public authorities or international organisations into the private sphere.” (Equal Times, 4. Februar 2022)

Ein Bericht, der 2019 von War Child, UNICEF und Samuel Hall veröffentlicht wurde, beinhaltet folgende Informationen zu Kinderarbeit:

„Those who are employed in Afghanistan earn less than they would if employed in Iran; they also work long hours. Under Afghanistan’s labour law, 18 is the minimum age of employment; children over 15 may do ‘light types of work’ and 14 is the minimum age for vocational training. In addition the labour law prohibits youth from engaging in work that is physically arduous or harmful to health. 46% of child deportees who work are between the ages of 10 and 14 years old; 61% are 15-17 years old […]. The majority of these workers work more than 41 hours a week, with significant groups of these working more than 51 hours a week […]. This is in violation of the terms of Afghanistan’s own labour laws, but the capacity of the government to enforce these laws is lacking.” (War Child / UNICEF / Samuel Hall, 2019, S. 27)

Bildungsmöglichkeiten abseits von Koranschulen

Im Jänner 2022 veröffentlichte die Staatendokumentation des österreichischen Bundesamts für Fremdenwesen und Asyl, die mit der Sammlung und Aufbereitung von Herkunftsländerinformationen beauftragt ist, einen Bericht zur sozioökonomischen Lage in Afghanistan. Der Bericht basiert auf von ATR Consulting durchgeführten Umfragen von 300 Personen im Alter von 16 bis 35 Jahren in Kabul, Herat und Masar-e Scharif und enthält folgende Informationen zum Bildungszugang in Afghanistan:

„4. Access to education

Respondents did not say whether their children were currently attending school and only disclosed whether their children attended school prior to the Afghan government’s collapse. The reason for concealing this information could be to protect their children and families from potential Taliban reprisals given the Taliban caretaker administration’s ban on schooling for virtually all girls and women, and their opposition to the curriculum of the former government that advanced gender equality, human rights, critical thinking, and progress and inclusion for girls and boys.

Before the Afghan government collapsed on 15 August 2021, the school attendance rates in each of the provinces of the respondents’ families were as follows: Balkh (boys 59%, girls 53.8%), Herat (boys 51.9%, girls 40.4%), Kabul (boys 48.9%, girls 26.7%). Overall, 87% of children attended public schools, while 11% attended private schools, and only 1% attended a madrassa or a mosque for religious schooling.

Public schools are free whereas private schools charge monthly fees. Of the 11% children in private schools, 22.2% cost up to AFN 2,000 (US$ 20) [rund 19 Euro, Anm. ACCORD] per month, 11.1% up to AFN 3,000 (US$ 30) [rund 29 Euro, Anm. ACCORD] per month, and 22.2% cost over AFN 5,000 per month [rund 48 Euro, Anm. ACCORD]. The cost of education for the remainder is unknown.” (BFA Staatendokumentation, 18. Jänner 2022, S. 7)

Die Bertelsmann Stiftung, eine deutsche gemeinnützige Denkfabrik mit Sitz in Gütersloh, fasst in ihrem Länderbericht zu Afghanistan vom Februar 2022 die bildungspolitische Lage für den Zeitraum vom 1. Februar 2019 bis zum 31. Jänner 2021, vor der Machtübernahme der Taliban, folgendermaßen zusammen:

„The constitution of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan is based on Islamic law. Therefore, Islam plays a particularly important role in public and political discourse. […] In December 2020, the Ministry of Education in a controversial statement stated that it will move grades one to three of primary school education to mosques. This sparked an intense discussion among civil society and ordinary Afghans, who blamed the government for using places of worship for political purposes. […]

Overall, the Afghan education system is low quality. Educational infrastructure, schooling materials and teaching methods are underdeveloped. According to UNICEF (2020), around 3.7 million children are not in school in Afghanistan, most of them in remote areas. ‘Insecurity, shortages of school buildings and textbooks, rural access issues, poor data reliability, and the alleged appointment of teachers on the basis of cronyism and bribery’ are the reasons for this gap, as reported by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR).” (Bertelsmann Stiftung, 23. Februar 2022, S. 7 -8)

Die internationale Menschrechtsorganisation Human Rights Watch (HRW) veröffentlicht im Juni 2020 einen Bericht zu Lebensumständen und Politik in den zum Berichtszeitraum von den Taliban besetzten Regionen Afghanistans, der folgende Informationen zum afghanischen Schulsystem im Allgemeinen enthält:

„Although primary education is compulsory by law in Afghanistan through class nine, the government has neither the capacity to provide this level of education to all children nor a system to ensure that all children attend school. Overcrowding, lack of infrastructure and supplies, and weak oversight mean that children who do go to school may study in a tent with no textbook for only three hours a day. There is a shortage of teachers overall, and the government’s failure to provide teachers, especially female teachers, in rural areas has undermined efforts to expand access to school in rural areas, especially for girls. Corruption and politically driven efforts to inflate the numbers of students have plagued efforts to expand education since 2001. […]

Afghanistan’s primary and secondary education system consists of four main types of schools. Government schools operate under the Ministry of Education, which is dependent on donor funding. Private schools in urban areas provide an option for families who can afford fees. Madrassas, schools devoted primarily to religious instruction, teach many children in both government-held and Taliban-held areas. Most operate outside the government education system and often exclude core subjects in the government’s curriculum or teach only religious subjects. Finally, community-based education (CBE) is a model that has been used to successfully reach many Afghan children who would otherwise be denied education, particularly girls; it remains entirely outside the government education system and is wholly dependent on donor funding.” (HRW, 30. Juni 2020, S. 13-14)

Im März 2022 fasst die Hohen Kommissarin der Vereinten Nationen für Menschenrechte in ihrem Bericht zur Menschenrechtslage in Afghanistan die Lage hinsichtlich Bildung folgendermaßen zusammen:

„B. The right to education

17. Over the past two decades, significant advances had been made in education, especially for girls. Before August 2021, 9.2 million children (38 percent girls) were in school - an eight-fold increase from the early 2000s. Of the four million children not enrolled in school, approximately 60 percent were girls. Due to a shortage of female teachers, the ongoing conflict, and limited investment, however, the education system had limited reach, particularly in remote areas. The education sector, as with the health sector, has been heavily dependent on donors and outsourcing to NGOs. Furthermore, education infrastructure remains poor, with most schools, particularly those located in remote areas, in need of refurbishment.

18. Since August 2021, the de facto authorities have repeatedly given public assurances that girls’ education would continue, particularly beyond the sixth grade, but on the asserted basis of an Islamic framework. On 18 November 2021, the de facto authorities announced that schools would reopen in March 2022, including for girls beyond the sixth grade, pending development of a new education policy. There has been no confirmation from the de facto authorities as to the curriculum that will be taught or whether it will be the same for boys and girls.

20. The funding crisis has also meant that public-school teachers, in particularly contract teachers did not receive their monthly salaries on a regular basis, and are without clear perspective when or whether they will be paid again. In addition, no funds are available to provide key inputs to education such as funding to keep school operational, the provision of teaching and learning materials, including text books, or teacher training support, putting children in public schools at risk of dropping out.” (HRC, 4. März 2022, S. 5)

Das Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN), eine regierungsunabhängige, gemeinnützige Forschungsorganisation mit Hauptsitz in Kabul, die Analysen zu politischen Themen in Afghanistan und der umliegenden Region erstellt, hat eine Reihe von Berichten zu Praxis und Politik der Taliban im Bereich der Schulbildung veröffentlicht. Der erste Bericht erschien im Jänner 2022 und enthält folgende allgemeine Informationen zu religiöser Bildung in Afghanistan:

„This series looks at schools (maktabs), rather than madrassas, which impart religious education. In literature and discourse, school education is often referred to as ‘secular’ or ‘modern’. These terms are not used in this series of reports unless in quotations: given the extensive religious syllabus of Afghan schools, they are hardly secular, while calling schools’ modern’ implicitly downgrades madrassa education as ‘backwards’ or, more positively, ‘traditional’. Nevertheless, these terms do get to the heart of why education has proved so controversial in Afghanistan over much of the last hundred years – and continues to be so. Schooling has brought opposing socio-economic and political interests and ideology into conflict, repeatedly pitting ‘modernisers’ especially within the state against mullahs, and the urban against the rural.” (AAN, 26. Jänner 2022)

Derselbe Bericht des AAN vom Jänner 2022 beschreibt das Bildungssystem Afghanistans zum Zeitpunkt der Machtübernahme der Taliban wie folgt:

„The state of education as the Taleban took over

The Taleban took over an education system where provision of schooling was not universal. In conservative areas where there was little or only weak demand for or outright hostility toward girls’ schooling, the Republic did not provide schools or provided only some grades, eg 1 to 3, or 1 to 6 for girls, and not the full education, which in Afghanistan is up to 12 grade, to boys either. Corruption in the old administration also meant there were ghost schools, which existed only on paper, with teachers’ salaries and running costs pocketed by bent officials (see this attempt by AAN in 2017 to pin down the number of government schools which did actually exist).

As a result of various pressures and mores, some families have never sent their children to school even where schools exist. In its 2019 report into the schooling of adolescent girls in Afghanistan UNICEF described how insecurity held some families back from sending their children to school and that this affected daughters more than sons. Poverty can also be a major barrier, in this case, especially for boys, who may need to work outside the home to support the family. ‘[B]oys’ education opportunities,’ reported UNICEF, ‘appear to be particularly impacted by poverty’ whereas ‘girls have a high likelihood of being out-of-school across all wealth quintiles.’ In other words, cultural taboos and expectations are more likely to restrict girls’ access to education than how well-off their families are. […]

This then was the situation for Afghan schools when the Taleban took power on 15 August. Getting a clear sense of what has happened since has been difficult, but research undertaken as part of our Living with the Taleban project – with interviews carried out in close to 40 districts across the country – revealed several, sometimes contradictory trends: Where there were schools, interviewees mostly reported that boys up to grade 12 and girls up to grade 6 could go to school in their area. Where schooling never existed to any great degree or grades were limited or only offered to boys, this has not changed. In some areas, the quality of education has deteriorated, with fewer grades offered or teachers not working. In much of the north and some other provinces, or possibly some districts in other provinces, schools, including secondary schools for girls, stayed open or reopened quickly, although in some areas, there are problems with quality and/or attendance. In Panjshir, the last province to fall to the Taleban, schooling did not restart when it did for the rest of the country, for either boys or girls, and in the provincial capital, it had not begun at all by the time the winter break started.

Repercussions and conclusions

These interviews say much about the variation in schooling in Afghanistan, both before and after the Taleban takeover. Provision, never universal, has been further squeezed by the new administration’s disinclination to let older girls go to school. […] Another potential issue is salary payments. The Taleban have said they paid salaries for August, September and October. Several of our interviewees mentioned problems with teachers getting paid and that this was having repercussions for both the availability and quality of education (although salaries may have been paid after the interviews were conducted).” (AAN, 26. Jänner 2022)

Der oben angeführte Bericht vom Dezember 2019 des Kinderhilfswerks der Vereinten Nationen (United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF) zur Schulbildung von Mädchen, der auch auf Bildungsunterschiede zwischen Mädchen und Buben eingeht, kann unter folgendem Link abgerufen werden:

·      UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund: Afghanistan Education Equity Profile for Adolescent Girls, Dezember 2019

Der afghanische Nachrichtensender TOLO News berichtet im Dezember 2021 von einer steigenden Zahl von Kindern, die aufgrund von Armut die Schule abbrechen müssten:

„The number of Afghan children who do not attend school but are employed in hazardous jobs has increased across the country. Talking with TOLOnews, most of the children said they are severely disappointed about their future. Many Afghan children must work to help their families financially. Mohammad is one of the children who says he has lost hope for his future. He searches in trash cans on the street to find firewood or cans to resell. […] The extreme poverty of Afghan families drives many children into various hazardous jobs to find food for their families. The poverty induces many children to leave school. […] Afghanistan is considered the worst place to be a child, as 4 million children are out of school and 2 million are working as child laborers, according to estimates by international organizations.” (TOLO News, 29. Dezember 2021)

Der in Doha ansässige arabische Nachrichtensender Al Jazeera veröffentlicht im Dezember 2021 einen Gastkommentar von Sultan Barakat, Direktor des Zentrums für Konflikt- und humanitäre Studien am Doha Institut, der auf die Bildungslage und die Rückkehr von Madrassas nach der Machtübernahme der Taliban hinweist:

„Afghanistan is facing a critical moment in which international assistance is urgently needed to prevent the collapse of its education system. Advances in education have come to symbolise the achievements in Afghanistan’s reconstruction over the last 20 years, with more than 9 million children enrolled in school.

However, according to UNICEF, there are currently more than 4 million out-of-school children, with more than half of them being girls. The complex economic and humanitarian crisis that is engulfing the country is expected to get worse in the coming year and threatens to undo the progress of the previous two decades. Hundreds of thousands of teachers have gone unpaid for almost six months, with teachers in Herat province protesting to demand that the Taliban pay their salaries.

This fast-deteriorating situation threatens to trigger one of the worst education emergencies in the world. UNHCR has warned that nearly 23 million people are suffering from extreme levels of hunger, with nine million at risk of famine. With Afghan livelihoods threatened, many Afghan families will inevitably be forced into choosing survival over pursuing an education. There is a real risk that the quantity and quality of education will drop precipitously, with the madrassa re-emerging as the main form of schooling in Afghanistan and a lost generation of Afghan children being denied educational opportunities.” (Al Jazeera, 14. Dezember 2021)

Die in den USA erscheinende Zeitschrift Foreign Policy (FP) hat im Oktober 2021 einen Artikel zu Bildungsmöglichkeiten in Afghanistan nach der Machtübernahme der Taliban veröffentlich:

„Education has, for all intents and purposes, been pilloried in the Taliban’s new Afghanistan. The extremist rulers have declared modern learning irrelevant, banned girls from going to school, and say the religious curriculum taught at madrassas is the only scholarship the country needs. […]

Abdul Baqi Haqqani, the Taliban’s acting higher education minister, said this week that qualifications earned in the past 20 years—as the international community invested billions of dollars in development—are of no use to the country, even as it slips into economic meltdown and humanitarian catastrophe. In a meeting with university faculty, he said modern studies were ‘less valuable’ than religious subjects taught at madrassas, Islamic religious schools, and said his ministry would hire teachers with ‘values’ that are useful to Afghanistan, an apparent reference to the Taliban’s as-yet-undisclosed interpretation of sharia.” (FP, 8. Oktober 2021)

Der bereits angeführte erste Bericht aus der Berichtsreihe des Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) vom Jänner 2022 zur Schulpolitik der Taliban enthält folgende Informationen hinsichtlich bildungspolitischer Besetzungen:

„Following the general pattern in the Taleban administration, the senior appointees to the Ministry of Education are all male and madrasa-educated. […] A similar trend of assigning clerics to education offices can also be seen at the subnational level. Local schoolteachers and researchers in various provinces – Herat in the northwest, Helmand and Kandahar in the south, Logar and Paktia in the east and Balkh in the north – reported some clerics and Taleban-sympathising schoolteachers had been put in charge of provincial and district directorates of education. In Herat, for example, the new provincial director of education is Mawlawi Shahabuddin Saqeb, a Taleban-affiliated cleric from the largely Pashtun-inhabited Shindand district in the south of the province (watch him speak to the local private TV network Asr on 22 September). Shindand was the hub of the Taleban insurgency in the province.” (AAN, 26. Jänner 2022)

Der zweite Bericht aus der Berichtsreihe zur Schulpolitiker der Taliban des AAN ist ebenfalls im Jänner 2022 erschienen und enthält folgende Informationen zu derzeit bekannten aktuellen bildungspolitischen Ansätzen der Taliban:

„When the Taleban captured power in August 2021, there was little detail known about their current ideas or plans for education, if indeed these had crystallised into any sort of policy. There have been some hints since, which we will detail here. […]

Hints of Taleban education policy

Statements made by the Taleban leadership, in particular the new acting Minister of Education, Sheikh Nurullah Munir, hint at two educational concerns which are both general and ambiguous. The first is what sort of education is suitable for Afghan children, with two themes emerging: education must be guided by Islamic sharia and promote what the Taleban refer to as melli aw eslami rohiya (a national and Islamic spirit).

In a major event introducing the new minister on 12 September 2021, the Taleban-affiliated mullah, Mawlana Muhammad Sharif, said that ‘the science of sharia is above all sciences’ and that ‘only if they are guided by the values of the revealed religion of Islam and if they have an Islamic motivation, can an educated person serve Afghanistan and its people’ (see reporting on the event by the state-run news agency, Bakhtar). Other speakers included Abdul Hakim Haqqani whom the Taleban later appointed as their chief justice (see this Etilaat Roz newspaper report) and the minister Sheikh Nurullah Munir himself. He stressed that he would give special attention to ‘the adab [habits/morals] of pupils and education in the light of the revealed religion of Islam.’ At the same time, he also asked for ‘the free and unconditional humanitarian assistance of the world community for education in Afghanistan.,

Subsequently, in a 19 September education ministry leadership meeting, Munir told members of the Taleban’s education commission and the ministry’s heads of directorates that they must prioritise ‘the education of the homeland’s children with a national and Islamic spirit’ (see this education ministry news post). On 21 September, meeting representatives of the teacher training institute union, he asked them to ‘educate the country’s children with an Islamic spirit and a sense of patriotism’ (see this other education ministry news post).

In another interview with Bakhtar on 17 November, Munir called many parts of the existing curriculum ‘un-Islamic’ and said they were working to ‘Islamise’ it (see this Etilaat Roz report). In a 4 October interview with the Qatari TV network Al Jazeera, Munir gave a little more detail: ‘If we find content that contradicts shari’a law in any textbook, we will have to replace it. Subjects such as physics, geology, chemistry, and engineering will remain intact, but if there are things that contradict shari’a law, the laws of our country, or our customs and traditions, we will have no choice but to take the necessary steps. Some topics, like music, existed in the previous curriculum, but they are not compatible with our customs, religion, and traditions.’

The Afghan school curriculum already contains extensive religious study. At the primary level, it begins with children studying the Quran and working from a book called ‘Islamic Teaching and Upbringing’ (Eslami Showana aw Ruzana in Pashto and Talim wa Tarbia-ye Eslami in Dari, with a different text for Shia Muslim school children). This introduces them to some short suras (chapters) and verses from the Quran, core elements of practice such as ablution and prayer, and of the faith, including the rights of neighbours, teachers and parents in Islam, and the life of the Prophet Muhammad and of the caliphs. Arabic and tajwid (the correct way to recite the Quran) are taught starting at grade 7, and the whole of the Quran (with translation) is studied from grades 7 to 12 along with hadiths of the Prophet and more advanced elements of belief (eg inheritance, zakat and Islamic business practice). In grades 10 to 12, children study tafsir (exegesis of the Quran).

The Taleban could introduce more religious elements, but this would be further Islamising the curriculum, not Islamising it. The ministry has not clarified what changes would need to be made to schooling to make it ‘compatible’ with Afghan culture and Islamic sharia, nor imbue it with a religious and patriotic spirit. There is so little to go on from ministerial statements to suggest how policy might develop now that the Taleban are in government that looking back at history is helpful. Attitudes to education have evolved among Taleban, and among the population more generally, and this may point to where policy is heading.” (AAN, 31. Jänner 2022)

Der bereits oben angeführte HRW-Bericht vom Juni 2020 zu Lebensumständen und Politik in von den Taliban besetzten Regionen Afghanistans, enthält folgende Informationen zur Entwicklung der Bildungspolitik der Taliban seit 2011:

„Taliban Policy on Education since 2011

The Taliban’s policy on education has evolved from outright opposition to state-run schools to efforts since 2011 to assume an oversight role over educational services in some provinces. The Taliban’s 2010 code of conduct (layha) established a commission on education, but it was not until after 2014 that an articulated written policy and administrative structure, including offices at the provincial and district level, emerged. The policy outlines the Islamic basis for government support to education and regulations governing the curriculum and hiring of teachers.

The emergence of the Taliban’s written education policy coincided with their co-optation of the state education system in areas under their control, so that funding from the Afghan government’s Education Ministry—much of it provided by international donors—continued, even as Taliban officials began overseeing the running of schools. […] In managing schools, Taliban officials monitor attendance, particularly of teachers, recruit teachers, and punish absentee teachers with beatings or dismissal.

The Taliban have also implemented changes to the curriculum, giving priority to religious studies and in some cases removing classes on culture (including music) and ‘terrorism,’ and modifying history lessons. Taliban officials have in some cases threatened teachers for not paying part of their salaries to the Taliban as a ‘tax.’ […] The Taliban’s policy on education, however, remains a work in progress.” (HRW, 30. Juni 2020, S. 15-17)

Die Aufsichtsbehörde der US-Regierung für den Wiederaufbau Afghanistans (Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, SIGAR) berichtet im Rahmen ihres Quartalsbericht zu Wiederaufbaubemühungen der USA vom Jänner 2022 (Beobachtungzeitraum: 1. Oktober bis 31. Dezember 2021) zu neuen Lehrplänen der Taliban im Jahr 2022:

„The Taliban have said they are developing a new education curriculum for 2022, with changes to some subjects to begin with the new school year starting on March 22 [2022]. While State told SIGAR they have no evidence that such a Taliban curriculum has yet been operational, a December 2020 report from the Taliban’s education commission criticizing the school curriculum of the fallen Islamic Republic can shed some light on the type of educational changes they may implement. The Taliban ‘review committee on the modern school curriculum’ said it had thoroughly examined all of the Islamic Republic’s textbooks from the first through sixth grade, and offered core principles and guidelines for changing the entire lower and higher education curriculum. […]

A central theme of the report is the desire to remove ‘foreign influence’ from the school curriculum. The Taliban seek to redefine concepts such as ‘freedom,’ ‘human rights,’ ‘peace,’ and ‘equality’ within its interpretation of Islamic tradition, and to teach that the framework of Sharia is the only path to attaining these values. The report said that texts and images in violation of such values, including music and images of musical instruments, should be removed from lessons. The report also advocates teaching ‘war’ and ‘holy Jihad’ as distinct concepts, creating new lessons about the ‘American savage occupation,’ and instilling patriotic values in students. Teachers ‘should promote and encourage the spirit of jihad and freedom in the minds and hearts of the students.’ Many of the changes called for in this report relate to how textbooks depict women and girls. […] Finally, the report concludes by recommending that the subjects of fine arts, civic studies, and culture be removed from the education curriculum.” (SIGAR, 30. Jänner 2022, S. 112-113)

Situation von (minderjährigen) Rückkehrern aus dem Iran ohne familiären Anschluss

Ein Bericht, der 2019 von War Child, UNICEF und Samuel Hall veröffentlicht wurde, beinhaltet folgende Informationen zur Rückkehr Minderjähriger aus dem Iran:

„The community dimension of migration is a core element of the migration and reintegration ecosystem. Families make the decision to send their children to migrate based on social networks abroad and at home; children take these networks into account when making the decision to move.

Upon return, the community can play an integral part in ensuring a supportive reintegration context; however, this community involvement has not until now been formulated programmatically, even as deported children and their families report ad hoc community support and involvement.” (War Child / UNICEF / Samuel Hall, 2019, S. 27)

In seinem Jahresbericht zu Kinderarbeit (Beobachtungszeitraum: 2019) hält das US Department of Labor (USDOL) im September 2020 das Folgende zu minderjährigen Rückkehrer·innen fest:

In 2019, approximately 505,000 undocumented Afghans returned or were deported to Afghanistan: 485,000 from Iran and just under 20,000 from Pakistan. Many returnees and deportees were unaccompanied minors. Some deportee children are subject to sexual and physical violence or forced labor while in deportation process camps, particularly in Iran. Many unaccompanied minor returnees faced similar problems. An indeterminate number of children also returned from Europe, including those whose asylum applications had been rejected. Such children are vulnerable to recruitment by armed groups and traffickers. These children have difficulties enrolling in school because they lack the necessary identity documents. In 2018, 66 per cent of undocumented returnee children did not attend school. Many of them were particularly vulnerable to child labor, including debt bondage in brick factories. Some individuals who facilitate repatriation take returnees to brick factories and keep them in debt bondage to repay their transportation costs. International organizations noted that traffickers specifically targeted these returnees for forced labor upon return to Afghanistan.” (USDOL, 30. September 2020)

Zu Abschiebungen aus dem Iran veröffentlich der in Doha ansässige Nachrichtensender Al Jazeera im November 2021 folgende Informationen:

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) found that just over one million Afghans have been sent back this year, including more than 28,000 Afghans in the last week of October, despite the dire conditions awaiting them.

‘The majority were deported, returning to Afghanistan often broke and broken, in need of health support, food and rest,’ IOM director general Antonio Vitorino said in a statement on Thursday. […]

IOM said Iran has returned 1,031,757 Afghans to their home country so far this year. The UN migration agency counted at least 3,200 unaccompanied children among them.” (Al Jazeera, 11. November 2021)

Ein Bericht, der im Juni 2020 von Samuel Hall, einem sozialen Unternehmen, das Forschung zu Migration und Vertreibung durchführt, veröffentlicht wurde, beinhaltet folgende Informationen zu den Reintegrationsbedürfnisse minderjähriger Rückkehrer·innen:

„Reintegration Needs Of Child Returnees:

‘Most of the children who go to Iran have either stolen, fought, or have lost their parents – they need a program to reintegrate, they need to be taught how to do something else, to stop going to Iran.’ – Social worker, Herat” (Samuel Hall, 30. Juni 2020, S. 7)

In einer Publikation zur Situation von Kindern in Afghanistan hält das UNO-Kinderhilfswerk (UNICEF) 2018 Folgendes fest:

„Children and their families are allowed to settle where they would like upon return. Most of the families/children who choose to return prefer to settle in relatively secure provinces like Kabul, Mazar, Herat or some other provinces with lower risk of militant attacks and insurgency.

War Child UK works on the reunification of unaccompanied minor refugees’ returnees in Afghanistan. War Child has reunified some 4,855 individuals between July 2016- December 2017, only from Iran. Most children were sent to Iran by their families for reasons of poverty, dowry payment, poor health or the death of a family member, insecurity, difficult home life and lack of access to education. Some of the children after being returned to Afghanistan do not want to go back to their own families.” (UNICEF, 2018, S. 108)

Der bereits erwähnte Bericht, der 2019 von War Child, UNICEF und Samuel Hall veröffentlicht wurde, beinhaltet detaillierte Informationen zur Situation und zum Reintegrationsbedarf von aus dem Iran abgeschobenen Minderjährigen (S. 22-35), konzentriert sich dabei allerdings auf Kinder, die über ein soziales Auffangnetz in Afghanistan verfügen:

·      War Child / UNICEF / Samuel Hall: Coming back to Afghanistan - Study on Deported Minors’ Return and Reintegration Needs in the Western region, 2019

Ein 2018 veröffentlichter Bericht der NGO Save the Children enthält ausführliche Information zu den Bedingungen für Rückkehr und Wiedereingliederung (S. 36-45) sowie zum Unterstützungsbedarf (S. 46-49) von minderjährigen Rückkehrer·innen aus Europa:

·      Save The Children: From Europe to Afghanistan; Experiences of Child Returnees, 16. Oktober 2018

Quellen: (Zugriff auf alle Quellen am 8. April 2022)

·      AA - Anadolu Agency: Economic crisis hits Afghanistan orphanages hard, 4. Dezember 2021

·      AAN – Afghanistan Analysts Network: Who Gets to Go to School? (1): What people told us about education since the Taleban took over, 26. Jänner 2022

·      AAN – Afghanistan Analysts Network: Who gets to go to school? (2) The Taleban and education through time, 31. Jänner 2022

·      ACCORD – Austrian Centre for Country of Origin and Asylum Research and Documentation: Afghanistan: Aktuelle Lage & Überblick über relevante Akteure; Situation gefährdeter Gruppen, März 2022 (Vortragende: Katja Mielke und Emran Feroz)

AIHRC – Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission: Impact of Covid-19 on the Human Rights Situation of Children in Afghanistan, 21. November 2020

·      Al Jazeera: Iran deporting thousands of Afghan refugees, 11. November 2021

·      Al Jazeera: In Afghanistan, education must take precedence over politics, 14. Dezember 2021

·      BAMF – Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (Germany): Briefing Notes, 7. Februar 2022

·      BBC News: Afghanistan: What's life like for children in the country?, 17. Jänner 2022

·      Bertelsmann Stiftung: BTI 2022 Country Report Afghanistan, 23. Februar 2022

·      BFA Staatendokumentation: Afghanistan; Socio-Economic Survey 2021, 18. Jänner 2022

·      BVwG – Bundesverwaltungsgericht: W184 2193493-3/5E, 11. Jänner 2022 (verfügbar im RIS – Rechtsinformationssystem)

·      Byline Times: The Taliban Protection Racket, 10. Jänner 2022

·      DFAT – Australian Government - Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade: DFAT Thematic Report on Political and Security Developments in Afghanistan (August 2021 to January 2022), 14. Jänner 2022

·      Equal Times: Afghanistan’s dire political and economic situation is undermining its fight against child labour, 4. Februar 2022

Finnish Immigration Service: Afghanistan: Fact-Finding Mission to Kabul in April 2019, 15. Oktober 2019

·      FP - Foreign Policy: School’s Out in the Taliban’s Afghanistan, 8. Oktober 2021

·      Gandhara: Eight Orphan Children Found Dead From Starvation In Kabul, 24. Oktober 2021

·      GCPEA – Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack: Education under Attack. A Global Study of Attacks on Schools, Universities, their Students and Staff, 2017-2019, 2020,

·      Hasht-e Subh: Child Labor in Afghanistan’s Parwan Province Increases Since Taliban Takeover, 21. Jänner 2022

·      HRC – UN Human Rights Council: Situation of human rights in Afghanistan; Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights [A/HRC/49/24], 4. März 2022

·      HRW – Human Rights Watch: “You Have No Right to Complain”, 30. Juni 2020

·      HRW – Human Rights Watch: This is our opportunity to end the Taliban's use of child soldiers, 20. September 2021

·      ILO – International Labour Organization: Employment prospects in Afghanistan: A rapid impact assessment, Jänner 2022 (veröffentlicht von ReliefWeb)

·      ITV News: Afghanistan orphanage forced to turn away children from desperate parents, 19. Jänner 2022

·      Reuters: Kabul orphanage struggles to feed its children as cash runs low, 15. Oktober 2021

Samuel Hall: Coming Back to Afghanistan: Deported Minors' Needs at a Time of COVID-19, 30. Juni 2020

·      Save The Children: From Europe to Afghanistan; Experiences of Child Returnees, 16. Oktober 2018

·      Save the Children: Afghanistan: A fifth of starving families sending children to works as incomes plummet in past six months, 14. Februar 2022

·      SFH – Schweizerische Flüchtlingshilfe: Afghanistan - Gefährdungsprofile, 31. Oktober 2021

SIGAR – Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction: Quarterly Report to the United States Congress, 30. Jänner 2022

·      The Conversation: With catastrophe looming, the world cannot turn its back on Afghanistan’s children, 2. November 2021

TOLO News: Poverty Compels Afghan Children to Leave School, Start Work, 29. Dezember 2021

·      TOLO News: Most Public Orphanages in Afghanistan Now Closed: Ministry, 1. Februar 2022

·      TRT World: Afghan orphans left without shelter, 17. November 2021

·      UN General Assembly: The situation in Afghanistan and its implications for international peace and security; Report of the Secretary-General [A/76/667–S/2022/64], 28. Jänner 2022

·      UNHCR – UN High Commissioner for Refugees: Afghanistan Protection Analysis Update; October 2021, Oktober 2021

·      UNICEF – UN Children's Fund: Child Notice Afghanistan; 2018, 2018

·      UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund: Afghanistan Education Equity Profile for Adolescent Girls, Dezember 2019

·      UN OCHA – UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs: Afghanistan Humanitarian Needs Overview 2022, 7. Jänner 2022

·      UN Security Council: Children and armed conflict in Afghanistan; Report of the Secretary-General [S/2021/662], 16. Juli 2021

·      USDOL – US Department of Labor: 2019 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor: Afghanistan, 30. September 2020

·      USDOL – US Department of Labor: 2020 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor: Afghanistan, 29. September 2021

·      USDOS – US Department of State: 2020 Country Report on Human Rights Practices: Afghanistan, 30. März 2021

·      USDOS – US Department of State: 2021 Trafficking in Persons Report: Afghanistan, 1. Juli 2021

·      War Child / UNICEF / Samuel Hall: Coming back to Afghanistan - Study on Deported Minors’ Return and Reintegration Needs in the Western region, 2019