This report is based on research conducted by Michael Shaikh and Idris Khattak, Human Rights Watch consultants on Afghanistan. It was written by John Sifton, senior researcher on terrorism and counterterrorism, with input from Michael Shaikh and Sam Zia-Zarifi, research director of the Asia Division. It was edited by Joanne Mariner, terrorism and counterterrorism program director; Brad Adams, Asia Division director; and Joseph Saunders, deputy director of the Program Office. James Ross, senior legal advisor, provided legal review.

Ranee Adipat, Fitzroy Hepkins, Andrea Holley, Anna Lopriore, Veronica Matushaj, and Dominique Chambless produced the report. Alexandra Sandels and Ranee Adipat provided research assistance.

Human Rights Watch is deeply grateful to the Afghan men, women, and children whom we interviewed for this report and who assisted us in our investigations. For security reasons, none can be named here. We thank the staff and officials of nongovernmental organizations and UN agencies in Afghanistan, including UNICEF, UNAMA, and UNIFEM, who have assisted us with our work, as well as our Afghan translators and interpreters, and the numerous other sources who provided helpful comments, advice, and information. Human Rights Watch also gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission and officials in the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Women’s Affairs, as well as officials in the International Security Assistance Force and the Afghanistan NGO Security Office.

We would also like to thank Ahmed Rashid and Barnett Rubin for their continuing support and encouragement.

Human Right Watch’s research on Afghanistan and terrorism and counterterrorism issues requires significant resources. We acknowledge with appreciation the generous support of the Annenberg Foundation.