Police Beat Depositors as Afghan Bank Run Continues

Government Employees Sought to Withdraw Salaries

A mass of government employees, including a number of local police and members of the Afghan Army were savagely beaten today when state police were unleashed on people attempting to withdraw their salaries from the struggling Kabul Bank.

The bank has been struggling with an ongoing bank run for over a week, and despite Afghan government pledges to bail out the well-connected bank large numbers of people sought to withdraw money today, ahead of a four day national holiday for the end of Ramadan.

It’s Eid, we need money for food, clothes, candy,” insisted one member of the Afghan Air Force. “They said all the bank branches would be open, they lied.” Kabul Bank insists it was ordered to close its branches by the central bank.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai, whose brother is a large stakeholder in the bank, has promised to back the bank with large amounts of Afghan government money, and it is believed that hundreds of millions of dollars may have already been pumped into it. The US has also dispatched a team to help the bank, though they have denied planning to bail them out.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.