Shīnḍanḍ District is one of the 16 districts of Herat Province, in western Afghanistan, is situated in the southern part of that province. It borders Adraskan District to the north, Ghor Province to the east and Farah Province to the south and west; the population was 173,800. The district center is the town of Shindand, which boasts a active market area. Shindand Air Base is located near the town; the main Herat-Kandahar road passes through the district. The Zerkoh Valley is in the district, its ancient name was Esfezar as still an Iranian small city, more a village, close to the border of Afghanistan on the Iranian side. Notable historical sites in Shindand include Qala Rustam-Zal. Shindand District is divided into five bigger districts, namely: Zawol, Poshteh-Koh, Kooh-Zoor and Qasaba. Shindand District is one of the most diverse and wide districts in Afghanistan, representing thirty different Afghan tribes which include both Tajik and Pashtun groups and sub-groups. Ismail Khan, the current Minister of Energy and Water is still ruling in this district and have major support, specially among his Tajik fellows.
Ismail Khan hails from Shindand province. In terms of tribal and ethnic groups, Shindand is one of the most diverse districts in Herat Province. Around 60 percent of the population is Pashtun and around 40% percent consists of Tajik and Aimaq Hazara and some Balochi people. However, sixty percent of Tajiks live within the city of Shindand, which includes Qasaba and surrounding districts; the main languages spoken in the district are Dari Persian. Shindand enjoys winds all year long. Though the winds pick up during the months of May through September, called Badayeh-Sado-Bist Roozeh; the rainy season is from November/December to March/April. AIMS District Map photos of Shindand District Robert Lankenau, 2005-03
Herat is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan, located in the western part of the country. Together with Badghis and Ghor provinces, it makes up the north-western region of Afghanistan, its primary city and administrative capital is Herat City. The province of Herat contains over 1,000 villages, it has a population of about 1,780,000, making it the second most populated province in Afghanistan behind Kabul Province. The population is multi-ethnic but Persian-speaking. Herat province shares border with Iran in the west and Turkmenistan in the north, making it an important trading province; the Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline is expected to pass through Herat from Turkmenistan to Pakistan and India in the south. The province has two airports, one is the Herat International Airport in the capital of Herat and the other is at the Shindand Air Base, one of the largest military bases in Afghanistan; the Salma Dam, fed by the Hari River is located in this province. The region of Herat was part of Greater Khorasan, successively controlled by the Tahirids followed by the Saffarids, Ghaznavids, Ilkhanates, Safavids, Afsharids, Qajarids until it became part of the modern state of Afghanistan.
During the 19th century, the British arrived from southern Afghanistan as part of its imperialistic policies and backed up the Afghans during one Persian siege and one capture of the city, the former in 1838, the latter in 1856 in order to prevent Persian or Russian influence reaching deeper in South Asia, more Britain's colony India as part of the Great Game. In the process, parts of the city of Herat were destroyed; the province remained peaceful until the 1979 Soviet invasion. The province saw a number of battles during the 1980s Soviet war, remained an active area of guerrilla warfare throughout, with local mujahideen commander Ismail Khan leading resistance against the Soviet-backed Afghan government; this continued until the Soviet Union withdrew all its forces in 1989. When the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan, Ismail Khan became the governor of the province, a position he retained until the Taliban forces from the south took control of the province in 1995. Following the ousting of the Taliban and establishment of the Karzai administration, led by Hamid Karzai, Ismail Khan once again became governor of Herat.
Ismail Khan become a figure of controversy when the media began reporting that he was attempting to restrict freedom of the people, that he was becoming more of an independent ruler as a warlord. He lost a son Mirwais Sadiq in 2004 during a fight with forces of other warlords. In response to this, the central government began expanding into the provide with the newly trained Afghan National Security Forces. Ismail Khan was ordered to leave his post to live in Kabul. After 2005, the International Security Assistance Force established presence in the area to help assist the Afghan government, it is led by Italy. A multi-national Provincial Reconstruction Team was established to help the local population of the province; the United States established a consulate in Herat, trained Afghan security forces, built schools, clinics. Herat was one of the first seven areas that transitioned security responsibility from NATO to Afghanistan. On July 21, 2011, Afghan security forces assumed lead security responsibility from NATO.
On the occasion, Minister of Defense Wardak told the audience, "this is our national responsibility to take over our security and defend our country." The current governor of the province is Mohammad Asif Rahimi, before him was Fazlullah Wahidi who had succeeded Daud Shah Saba in 2013. The provincial Police Chief, who leads the regular Afghan National Police and the Afghan Border Police, is responsible for all law enforcement activities; the Police Chief represents the Ministry of the Interior in Kabull. The province is home to 90% of Afghanistan's Saffron production. In 2015 the World Bank noted that saffron cultivation had provided Herat Province's farmers a steady source of income, jobs for both men and women, a decreased dependency on poppy cultivation. With international borders to Iran and Turkmenistan and an international airport, trade could play an important part in the economy of Herat Province. Due to the lack of urbanization in Herat Province, around 75% of the population lives in rural areas and economic activity is correspondingly reliant on agriculture and horticulture production with around 82% of economic activity coming from these fields in 2011.
Marble manufacturing and light industry comprised the remaining areas of economic activity. The percentage of households with clean drinking water fell from 31% in 2005 to 28% in 2011; the percentage of births attended to by a skilled birth attendant increased from 24% in 2005 to 25% in 2011. The overall literacy rate fell from 36% in 2005 to 25% in 2011; the overall net enrolment rate fell from 55% in 2005 to 52% in 2011. Herat University is Afghanistan's second largest university with over 10,000 students, 14 faculties and 45 departments in 2014; the total population of the province is about 1,780,000. Persian-speaking Tajiks form the majority. According to Afghanistan's Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development: "Around three quarters of the population of Hirat lives in rural districts while just under a quarter lives in urban areas. Around 50% of the population is male and 50% is female. Dari and Pashtu are spoken by 98% of the populati
Kuran wa Munjan District
Kuran wa Munjan District is one of the 28 districts of Badakhshan Province in eastern Afghanistan. Located in the Hindu Kush mountains, the district is home to 8,000 residents; the district administrative center is Kuran wa Munjan. The district is in the southwest corner of the province, is bordered on its northeast side by the Jurm and Zebak Districts. Most of the district's boundaries are adjacent to other Afghan provinces, but a small section on the eastern edge of the district lies on the international border between Afghanistan and Pakistan; the epicenter of the October 26 2015 Hindu Kush earthquake was 45 km north of here. Map at the Afghanistan Information Management Services
Guzara District is situated in the center of Herat Province, Afghanistan, 10 km south of Herat. It borders Injil District to the north, Pashtun Zarghun District to the east, Adraskan District to the south and Zinda Jan District to the west; the district center Guzara is on the main road Herat-Kandahar. Media related to Guzara District at Wikimedia Commons
Khwahan District, is one of the 28 districts of Badakhshan Province, located in northeastern Afghanistan. The district capital is Khwahan; the population of the district is 27,000. The district borders Raghistan to the southwest, Kuf Ab in the northeast, the Panj River in the northwest, Shuro-obod district, Khatlon Province, of Tajikistan. Kuh-e kallat List of villages and places, of Khwahan District in alphabetical order Darwaz Map at the Afghanistan Information Management Services Its coordinates are 37°53'19" N and 70°13'10" E in DMS or 37.8886 and 70.2194. Its UTM position is XG09 and its Joint Operation Graphics reference is NJ42-11khwahan
Dushi district is located in the central part of Baghlan Province, Afghanistan. It lies on the major Kabul-Kunduz highway; the population of the district was estimated to be around 57,160 in 2004. Hazaras are around 88% of the population and make up the majority in the district, followed by small minorities of Tajiks and Pashtuns The centre of the district is Dushi. Dushi is home to an overhead power line carrying imported electricity from Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan; the 300 MegaWatt supply was the subject of a grant for expansion in 2013 from the Asian Development Bank. The line supplies the capital, Kabul. On April 13, 2018, Taliban insurgents used explosives to destroy a pylon, disrupting power supplies to the region. Districts of Afghanistan Map of Settlements United Nations, AIMS, May 2002
Kandahār or Qandahār is the second-largest city in Afghanistan, with a population of about 557,118. Kandahar is located in the south of the country at an elevation of 1,010 m, it is the capital of Kandahar Province, the center of the larger cultural region called Loy Kandahar. In 1709, Mirwais Hotak made the region an independent kingdom and turned Kandahar into the capital of the Hotak dynasty. In 1747, Ahmad Shah Durrani, founder of the Durrani dynasty, made Kandahar the capital of the Afghan Empire. Kandahar is one of the most culturally significant cities of the Pashtuns and has been their traditional seat of power for more than 300 years, it is a major trading center for sheep, cotton, felt, food grains and dried fruit, tobacco. The region produces fine fruits pomegranates and grapes, the city has plants for canning and packing fruit, is a major source of marijuana and hashish en route to Tajikistan; the region around Kandahar is one of the oldest known human settlements. A major fortified city existed at the site of Kandahar as early as c.
1000-750 BCE, it became an important outpost of the Achaemenid Empire in the 6th century BCE. Alexander the Great had laid-out the foundation of what is now Old Kandahar in the 4th century BC and gave it the Ancient Greek name Αλεξάνδρεια Aραχωσίας. Many empires have long fought over the city due to its strategic location along the trade routes of southern and western Asia. Since the 1978 Marxist revolution, the city has been a magnet for groups such as Haqqani network, Quetta Shura, Hezbi Islami, al-Qaida and other terrorist groups. From late-1996 to 2001, it served as the de facto capital of the Taliban government until the Taliban were overthrown by US-led NATO forces during Operation Enduring Freedom in late-2001 and replaced by the government of President Hamid Karzai. One hypothesis derives the name of the city from Gandhara, the name of an ancient Hindu-Buddhist kingdom located along the Kabul and Swat rivers of northern Afghanistan and Pakistan. A folk etymology offered is that the word "kand" or "qand" in Persian and Pashto means "candy".
The name "Candahar" or "Kandahar" in this form translates to candy area. This has to do with the location being fertile and known for producing fine grapes, apricots and other sweet fruits. Ernst Herzfeld claimed Kandahar perpetuated the name of the Indo-Parthian king Gondophares, who re-founded the city under the name Gundopharron. Excavations of prehistoric sites by archaeologists such as Louis Dupree and others suggest that the region around Kandahar is one of the oldest human settlements known so far. Early peasant farming villages came into existence in Afghanistan ca. 5000 B. C. or 7000 years ago. Deh Morasi Ghundai, the first prehistoric site to be excavated in Afghanistan, lies 27 km southwest of Kandahar. Another Bronze Age village mound site with multiroomed mud-brick buildings dating from the same period sits nearby at Said Qala. Second millennium B. C. Bronze Age pottery and bronze horse trappings and stone seals were found in the lowermost levels in the nearby cave called Shamshir Ghar.
In the Seistan, southwest of these Kandahar sites, two teams of American archaeologists discovered sites relating to the 2nd millennium B. C.. Stylistically the finds from Deh Morasi and Said Qala tie in with those of pre-Indus Valley sites and with those of comparable age on the Iranian Plateau and in Central Asia, indicating cultural contacts during this early age. British excavations in the 1970s discovered that Kandahar existed as a large fortified city during the early 1st millennium BCE; this fortified city became an important outpost of the Achaemenid Empire in the 6th to 4th centuries BCE, formed part of the province of Arachosia. The now "Old Kandahar" was founded in 330 BC by Alexander the Great, near the site of the ancient city of Mundigak. Mundigak served as the provincial capital of Arachosia and was ruled by the Medes followed by the Achaemenids until the arrival of the Greeks from Macedonia; the main inhabitants of Arachosia were the Pactyans, an ancient Iranian tribe, who may be among the ancestors of today's Pashtuns.
Kandahar was named a name given to cities that Alexander founded during his conquests. Kandahar has been a frequent target for conquest because of its strategic location in Southern Asia, controlling the main trade route linking the Indian subcontinent with the Middle East and Central Asia; the territory became part of the Seleucid Empire after the death of Alexander. It is mentioned by Strabo that a treaty of friendship was established between the Greeks and the Mauryans; the city became part of the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom, continued that way for two hundred years under the Indo-Greek Kingdom. King Menander I of the Indo-Greek Kingdom practiced Greco-Buddhism and is recorded by the Mahavamsa to