Inspection of the Afghanistan Affairs Unit

F.P. Report

WASHINGTON: OIG reviewed the Afghanistan Affairs Unit’s operating environment, and inspected the unit’s executive direction, policy and program implementation, and resource management.

What OIG Recommends

OIG made 6 recommendations: 5 to the Afghanistan Affairs Unit and 1 to the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs. In its comments on the draft report, the Department concurred with 5 recommendations and neither agreed nor disagreed with 1 recommendation. OIG considers all 6 recommendations resolved. The Department’s response to each recommendation, and OIG’s reply, can be found in the Recommendations section of this report. The Department’s formal response is reprinted in its entirety in Appendix B.

What OIG Found

  • The Chargé d’Affaires and the acting Deputy Chief of Mission modeled the Department of State’s leadership principles following the evacuation of Embassy Kabul and in the transition to the formal establishment of the Afghanistan Affairs Unit in Doha, Qatar. During this time, the unit’s leadership paid particular attention to employee welfare.
  • Department and interagency stakeholders were not always clear about the lines of responsibility among the multiple Department entities with roles in the management of U.S. government policy or programs for Afghanistan.
  • From September 2021 through May 2022, the Political-Economic Section organized more than 50 meetings that aided in the release of detainees and equipment and facilitated discussion of economic, humanitarian, human rights, and related issues.
  • The Afghanistan Affairs Unit website, which remained branded as U.S. Embassy Afghanistan, generally lacked relevant, up-to-date content.
  • The Afghanistan Affairs Unit struggled to rebuild its contact lists following the Embassy Kabul evacuation and lacked a unified, mission-wide platform for managing contact information.