List of massacres in Afghanistan

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The following is a list of massacres that have occurred in Afghanistan (numbers may be approximate):

Durrani Empire and Anglo-Afghan War

Name Date Location Deaths Notes
Massacre of Elphinstone's Army January 6–13, 1842 Between Kabul and Jalalabad via Gandamak Approx 16,500 4,000 soldiers of the British East India Company and 12,000 civilians and camp followers
1888–1893 Uprisings of Hazaras 1888–1893 Hazaristan 400,000[1] Afghan Troops Massacre Hazaras and take their land known as Hazaristan

60% of the total Hazara population was either killed or displaced by the massacre.[2]

Khalq communist rule

  • Note: During the Soviet war between 600,000 and 2,000,000 Afghans were killed. This list is incomplete.
Name Date Location Deaths Notes
1979 Herat uprising March 1979 Herat Thousands disappeared without trace 3,000[3]–25,000[4]

In 1992, a mass grave was uncovered, containing 2,000 bodies of those killed by the DRA[5] repression.

Kerala massacre by the PDPA April 1979 Kerala, Kunar Province 1,000 killed Unarmed males murdered by the army
Chindawol uprising[6] June 1979 Thousands disappeared without trace

Civil war

Name Date Location Deaths Notes
Mass bombardment of Kabul by Hezb-i Islami 1992–1993 Kabul 50,000[7][8]
Afshar massacre by Sayyaf's Ittihad-e-Islami February 10–11, 1993 Kabul 570–750 700–750 kidnapped by Ittihad and presumed dead
Mass bombardment of Kabul by Hezb-i Islami January 1994 Kabul 24,000
Mass bombardment of Kabul by the Taliban 1995 Kabul 800–4,000
15 massacre campaigns by the Taliban and Al-Qaeda 1996–2001 Northern, central and western Afghanistan Unknown United Nations: "These are the same type of war crimes as were committed in Bosnia and should be prosecuted in international courts".[9] See some campaigns listed below.
Mazar-i-Sharif massacre by Junbish May and July 1997 Mazar-i-Sharif Up to 3,000 Junbish general Abdul Malik Pahlawan "is widely believed to have been responsible for the brutal massacre of up to 3,000 Taliban prisoners after inviting them into Mazar-i-Sharif."[10]
Anti-Hazara massacre in Mazar-i-Sharif 8–10 August 1998 Mazar-i-Sharif 2,000[11][12] to 20,000[13]
Taliban starvation of refugees 1998 Northern Afghanistan Thousands Denial of UN emergency food supplies to 160,000 starving refugees by the Taliban[14]
Istalif campaign by the Taliban and Al-Qaeda 1999 Istalif Unknown Nity with 45,000 homes razed completely[15]
Gosfandi massacre by the Taliban 1999 Gosfandi District, Sar-e Pol
Deliberate destruction of civilian livelihood 1999 Shomali Plain [16]
Robatak Pass killings January 14, 2000 pass connecting the settlements of Tashkurgan and Pule Khumri 31
Civilian killings by the Taliban January 2001 Yakawlang 250–3000
Anti-Hazara massacre in Bamiyan November 2001 Bamiyan 15,000[17]

War in Afghanistan (2001–present)

  • Note: According to the United Nations, 75–80% of civilian casualties in the War in Afghanistan were caused by the Taliban and other "resistance" groups from 2009 to 2011.[18][19][20] This list is incomplete and does not represent these official figures properly.
Name Date Location Deaths Notes
Kama Ado massacre by American Bombers December 1, 2001 Kama Ado Village 100
Dasht-i-Leili massacre by Junbish-i Milli under the alleged supervision of the United States military. December 2001 Dasht-i-Leili desert 250–3000
2007 Shinwar shooting by the US Marines March 4, 2007 Shinwar District 19 50 injured
Hyderabad airstrike by US-Afghan forces June 28, 2007 Gerishk District, Helmand 45–100 23–40
Nangar Khel incident by the Polish Armed Forces August 16, 2007 Khel, Paktika Province 6 3
Haska Meyna wedding party airstrike July 6, 2008 Haska Meyna, Haska Meyna District, Nangarhar province 47
2008 Indian embassy bombing in Kabul by the Taliban Haqqani network July 7, 2008 Kabul 58 141 wounded
Wech Baghtu wedding party attack by the United States military November 3, 2008 Wech Baghtu village, Shah Wali Kot District, Kandahar province 37 27 wounded
Granai airstrike by the US Airforce May 4, 2009 Granai, Bala Buluk District, Farah Province 86–145
Taliban car bomb in Kandahar August 25, 2009 Kandahar 30 Dozens wounded
2009 Kabul Indian embassy attack by the Taliban Haqqani network October 8, 2009 Kabul 17 63 wounded
Narang night raid by NATO forces December 27, 2009 Ghazi Khan Ghondi village, Narang District, Kunar province 10
Khataba raid by US Special Forces February 12, 2010 Khataba village, Paktia Province 5
Sangin airstrike by NATO forces. July 23, 2010 Sangin, Helmand province 39–52
2010 Badakhshan massacre by the Taliban August 5, 2010 Badakhshan 10 doctors on a humanitarian relief mission
Kabul Bank shooting by the Taliban February 19, 2010 Jalalabad 40 90 wounded
Maywand District killings by rogues US soldiers January – May 2010 Kandahar province 3
Kandahar massacre March 11, 2012 Kandahar province 16 5
Forward Operating Base Delhi Massacre by the Taliban August 10, 2012 Helmand Province 3 1 injured


  1. ^ "H A Z A R A G E N O C I D E ( 1 8 8 8 - 1 8 9 3 )". Wixsite.
  2. ^ دلجو, عباس (2014). تاریخ باستانی هزاره ها. کابل: انتشارات امیری. ISBN 978-9936801509.
  3. ^ Joes, Anthony James (2004). Resisting rebellion : the history and politics of counterinsurgency. Lexington, Ky.: University Press of Kentucky. ISBN 0813171997. OCLC 69255762.
  4. ^ Roy, Olivier, 1949- (November 22, 1990). Islam and resistance in Afghanistan (Second ed.). Cambridge [England]. p. 108. ISBN 0521393086. OCLC 21333718.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Dorronsoro, Gilles. (2005). Revolution unending : Afghanistan, 1979 to the present. Fondation nationale des sciences politiques. Centre d'études et de recherches internationales. London: C. Hurst. p. 101. ISBN 9781850657033. OCLC 213379004.
  6. ^ Male, Beverley (1982). Revolutionary Afghanistan: A Reappraisal. Taylor & Francis. ISBN 978-0-7099-1716-8.
  7. ^ "The 'Butcher of Kabul' is Welcomed Back in Kabul".
  8. ^ "Terry Glavin: The rehabilitation of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the Butcher of Kabul | National Post". September 28, 2016.
  9. ^ "Taliban massacres outlined for UN". Chicago Tribune. Newsday. October 2001.
  10. ^ "Afghan powerbrokers: Who's who". BBC News. November 19, 2001. Retrieved September 29, 2018.
  11. ^ "THE MASSACRE IN MAZAR-I SHARIF". Human Rights Watch. November 1998 Vol. 10, No. 7 (C).
  12. ^ Cooper, Kenneth J. (November 28, 1998). "TALIBAN MASSACRE BASED ON ETHNICITY". The Washington Post.
  13. ^ Gizabi, Akram. "Opinion: US–Taliban peace talks betray the trust of the Afghan people". Military Times.
  14. ^ "U.N. says Taliban starving hungry people for military agenda". Chicago Tribune. Associated Press. January 8, 1998.
  15. ^ "Re-Creating Afghanistan: Returning to Istalif". NPR. August 1, 2002.
  16. ^ "The Afghanistan Justice Project : Casting Shadows : War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity : 1978-2001 : Documentation and analysis of major patterns of abuse in the war in Afghanistan" (PDF). Retrieved June 29, 2019.
  17. ^ Caroll, Rory (April 7, 2002). "Pits reveal evidence of massacre by Taliban". The Guardian. Retrieved October 30, 2019.
  18. ^ "UN: Taliban Responsible for 76% of Deaths in Afghanistan". The Weekly Standard. August 10, 2010.
  19. ^ "Citing rising death toll, UN urges better protection of Afghan civilians". United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan. March 9, 2011. Archived from the original on July 26, 2011.
  20. ^ Haddon, Katherine (October 6, 2011). "Afghanistan marks 10 years since war started". AFP. Retrieved October 6, 2011.
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