Land grabbing and Restrictions to Pastoralism in Afghanistan


Afghanistan is one of the important countries of the dryland region of the world. Afghanistan is home and cradle of precious livestock breeds. The old civilization of zoroaster domesticated the present day bactrian camel in the ancient city of Bakhtria in Afghanistan. Afghanistan places precious and well adapted livestock breeds with very touchy livestock culture and home of nomads (Kochis).

Kochis or pastoralists having diversity of livestock species and breeds. They are the custodian of such precious animal genetic resources and guardian of the rich culture of nomadism.

Afghanistan being the land of wars and conflicts, now new and modern problems and conflicts area arising in the country. Because of the wars, there were restriction of the nomads movement with their livestock in some parts of the country.  Now arable farmers and warlords are grabbing the land for construction and high input agriculture production which further restrict the movement of livestock.

Nomadism is very important for livestock and flora diversity. Restriction affects the livestock production systems of the Kochis very negatively. Such phenomenon, i.e. land grabbing is further harmful for livestock biodiversity.

It is the utmost need of time to give attention to this issue and save pastoralism and their precious livestock breeds and culture. I hereby appeal international organizations like FAO to facilitate nomadism in Afghanistan and resist land grabbing and restriction of livestock movement of the nomads or Kochis.

Author: Dr Raziq

I’m PhD in Animal Agriculture, currently working as a Technical Manager at Al Ain Dairy (Camel Farm), Alain, UAE. I had worked as a Professor and Dean, at the Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lasbela University of Agriculture, Water and Marine Sciences Pakistan (LUAWMS). I work on and write for the subjects of ‘turning camel from a beast of burden to a sustainable farm animal’, agricultural research policies, extensive livestock production systems, food security under climate change context, and sustainable use of genetic resources for food and agriculture. I’m the founder and head of the Society of Animal, Veterinary and Animal Scientists (SAVES), Founder of the Camel Association of Pakistan and Organizer of the Group Camel4Life. I also work as a freelance scientist working (currently member of steering committee) for Desert Net International (DNI). I’m an ethnoecologist, ethnobotanist, Ethnovet and ethomedicie researcher and reviewer. I explore deserts and grazing lands for knowledge and understanding.

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