Find Out All About Paktika
Paktika is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan. It is in the south-east of the country and overwhelmingly conservative Sunni Pashtu. Its capital is Sharana.
Political and Military Situation
As one of the most remote provinces in Afganistan, and in an area that saw a lot of devastation in previous years, Paktika suffers from a serve lack of critical infrastructure. Reconstruction in the province after the fall of the Taliban has been slow in comparison to that in nearby provinces such as Khost and Zabul, in large part due to the remoteness of the region and repeated attacks on aid workers. In 2004, an American Provincial Reconstruction Team base was established in Sharana to lead the development effort.
While the province hasn't witnessed the outright fighting in the last few years that has affected provinces like Helmand, there is a constant low level of tribal violence accompanied by criminal and Taliban activity. The last serious fighting in the province took place in 2004, amid reports that then-Governor Muhammad Ali Jalali was collaborating with Taliban forces, and that the Taliban had effectively annexed eastern portions of the province. Jalali, and many of his allied officials, were replaced, U.S. Specal Forces were dispatched to fight the Taliban while the Pakistan forces fought with the Taliban's allies in neighbouring South Waziristan.
The current Governor of the province is Akram Khpalwak. In 2006, a previous Governor of the province, Muhammad Ali Jalali, was killed by Taliban millitants while driving in neighbouring Ghazni Province.
Paktika was once part of a greater province Paktia, that has itself now further split into Khost province. The province was the site of many battles during the Soviet occupation of the country and the lawless years that followed.
Paktika is bordered on the north by Paktia Province and Khost Province on the east, as well as South Waziristan, a Pakistani administrated tribal area. The southern border is shared with Zabul Province, while Ghazni Province is on its western flank.
Like many areas of the country, Paktika has been heavily deforested. This has been one of the causes of devastating flooding in recent years.
Orgun is the main market town and biggest city, while Sharana is the capital.