May 1: The membership of Afghanistan in the International Criminal Court was scheduled to take effect. After this date, the ICC was to have the authority to investigate and prosecute serious war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanitycommitted on Afghan soil.
- U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld met President Karzai at the presidential palace in Kabul. Rumsfeld also met with U.S.-coalition leader Lieutenant General Dan McNeill and toured a training base for the fledgling Afghan National Army. A senior U.S. official accompanying Rumsfeld said the U.S. was "moving out of major combat operations and...into reconstruction, stability and humanitarian relief operations." Rumsfeld's visit was a short lay over on his way from Kuwait to London.
- Speaking on television, Fazil Ahmed Manawi, the deputy chief of the Afghan Supreme Court, read a resolution made by a council of 350 Islamic scholars that urged Afghan women working outside of their homes to wear the traditional hijab. The statement also urged the government to punish publications that violated Islamic values. The council also called on the government to promotemadrassas and to give the Islamic scholars, in recognition of their role in the resistance to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, a say in the government.
- Afghan Interior Minister Ali Ahmad Jalali ordered release of 72 Pakistani prisoners and promised more would be freed soon.
May 2: The U.S. announced the resumption of the Fulbright Program for Afghanistan. The one-year, non-degree program would start in September and allow at least twenty Afghan students to go to the U.S. for study and training. The Program had been suspended in 1979 following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
May 3: In the Saydabad District of Wardak province, Afghanistan, a car belonging to the Afghan Development Agency was shot at. The driver was killed instantly and one passenger seriously wounded.
May 4: Afghan Rebels fired five rockets at U.S. special forces training near Gardez. The rockets missed the soldiers by 800 yards.
May 5: Afghan police arrested eight militants for the May 3 murder of a driver in the Saydabad District of Wardak province
- The U.S. released 22 prisoners Camp X-Ray at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Information about the nationalities and the destination of those released was not given.
- Ariana Afghan Airlines made its first flight to Russia since 1996.
- In Zabul Province, Afghanistan, two deminers were wounded by gunmen.
May 6: In Kabul, an estimated 300 Afghan government workers and university students demonstrated against the U.S., complaining that not enough had been done to rebuild the country or provide jobs and security. The protest was organized by the "Scientific Center" headed by Sediq Afghan.
- Lakhdar Brahimi, the U.N. special representative to Afghanistan, warned the United Nations Security Council that rising insecurity was a serious threat to the Afghan peace process.
May 7: Lakhdar Brahimi, the U.N. special representative for Afghanistan, told the United Nations Security Council that frequent attacks by rebels on aid workers and on Afghans as well as deadly factional clashes posed serious threats to the future of Afghanistan.
- Approximately 30 detainees (mostly Afghani, a few Pakistani) were transferred from Afghanistan to Camp X-ray in Guantánamo Bay.
- Afghan Water and Power Minister Mohammed Shakir Kargar said that only 5% of Afghanistan's 25 million people had access to electricity.
- India's Border Roads Organization began construction on a highway to link Afghanistan and Iran.
- Outside a mosque in Kalacha, Afghanistan, Habibullah, a Muslim cleric close to President Karzai, was shot to death. Six people had been detained.
- Two Afghan soldiers were wounded when a bomb exploded at the residence of Haji Sher Mohammed, the governor Helmand Province.
May 8: Two Afghan factions fought a gunbattle in Helmand Province, injuring two Afghan soldiers. The clash prompted U.S.-led coalition forces to call in two A-10s from Bagram air base as air support. The two wounded soldiers were evacuated to the U.S. air base at Kandahar.
- In separate raids on the outskirts of Karachi, Pakistan, Pakistani officials arrested two Afghans for suspected links with al Qaeda. The suspects were identified as Ismat Kaka and Ibadat Jan. Weapons and cell phones were seized.
- Eleven men released from Camp X-Ray in Cuba on May 5 arrived in Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan, where they remained in custody. The men no apology or compensation for their time, but they did receive a bag containing a new pair of pants and tennis shoes, a jacket, underwear and a bottle of shampoo. Two of the men expressed bitterness at being sent to the prison in Guantanamo Bay without being questioned first at home.
- Communications director for the Afghan Reconstruction and Development Center, Khaleda Atta, called on the Bush administration to lay out a specific plan for fully funded and comprehensive reconstruction in Afghanistan.
- A three-day Rebuild Afghanistan Trade Fair came to an end, climaxing in a US$220 million trade agreement signed between Pakistani and Afghan traders for exports such as carpet yarn, vegetable oil, polythene sheets, tobacco and construction material.
May 9: U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage met President Karzai and other senior officials in Kabul. Security concerns along the Afghan-Pakistan border were discussed. Armitage said the U.S. did not support a recent appeal by the United Nations for international peacekeepers to be deployed outside Kabul. He also handed a check to the Afghan government for US$100,000 to help refurbish Afghan National Museum.
- In New Delhi, Indian federal civil aviation minister Shahnawaz Hussain told Afghan civil aviation minister Mirwais Sadiqthat India would assist Afghanistan in building its aviation infrastructure. The assistance was contingent on Pakistan opening its airspace to India.
May 10: An Afghan soldier was killed and a U.S. special forces soldier wounded in firefights the Khost area of Afghanistan. A U.S. A-10 aircraft and AH-64 helicopters were called in to kill the remaining opposing fighters.
May 11: Southeast of Mazari Sharif, Afghanistan, six people were killed in a clash between loyalists to Abdul Rashid Dostum and another faction.
- In Afghanistan, demonstrators rallied against an amnesty offer that President Karzai made to some Talibanmembers.
May 12: In Afghanistan, dozens of state truck drivers blocked a highway to protest against non-payment of wages.
- A report by the independent Afghanistan Research and Evaluation Unit found that land-ownership disputes were the most common conflict in Afghanistan.
May 13: A second group of 13 medics from Hungary were scheduled to leave for Afghanistan. The first group left on March 8, 2003.
- In the northern part of Kabul, Afghanistan, two Norwegian soldiers with the International Security Assistance Force were shot and wounded. A soldier with the 8th Afghan National Army division was arrested.
- The British Army announced it would establish a base in Mazari Sharif, Afghanistan to work on rebuilding and security.
- The State Bank of Pakistan imposed a ban on opening of Letters of Credit for the import of 18 items meant for Afghanistan. The items were tobacco substitutes, non-cotton yarn, dyes, PVC and PMC materials, black tea, capacitors, art silk fabrics, vegetable ghee, cooking oil, tyres and tubes, refrigerators, air conditioners, televisions, soap and shampoos, auto parts, telephones, razor or shaving blades, and video cassettes.
May 14: Iran signed an agreement to train Afghan pilots and to help rebuild Afghan airports in Balkh Province and Herat Province.
- Pakistan hosted the first-ever meeting of the Tripartite Commission in Islamabad with the government of Afghanistan and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to discuss the ongoing return and reintegration of Afghan refugees.
May 15: The World Trade Organization is expected to consider the application of Afghanistan to their body.
- Clashes between rival forces loyal to Ustad Atta Mohammad and to General Abdul Rashid Dostum took place in the Gosfandiarea of Sar-i-Pul Province, killing at least two followers from each side. Atta's men imprisoned a Dostum commander during the exchange. Fighting between the rival forces also took place in the Daraye Souf region in Samangan Province.
- In Spin Boldak, Afghanistan, one person was killed and three others injured when a bomb exploded in a small mosque at the local municipal authority's office. It was believed to be a suicide bombing.
- A British soldier was slightly wounded in Kabul, Afghanistan when an Afghan man threw a grenade at a British peacekeeping base.
- Gunmen attacked a Mine Evaluation Training Agency vehicle on Sathi Kandaw pass between Gardez and Khost, Afghanistan, prompting the United Nations to suspended travel along the route. The driver was shot in the chest and one mine clearer suffered superficial head wounds. The incident also prompted the U.N. to provide escorts for its vehicles.
May 16: The Asian Development Bank allocated $500 million for Afghanistan's reconstruction.
May 17: After completing a physical training run, a U.S. soldier died at the Kabul Military Training Center in Afghanistan.
- U.S. special forces troops seized a weapons cache near Jalalabad. The cache included nearly 400 mortar rounds and over 70 rockets.
- In caves at Maymana, near Mazari Sharif, Afghanistan, special forces discovered tank rounds and small arms ammunition, and transferred them to the Afghan National Army.
- A U.S. military vehicle struck two Afghan boys in Gardez, killing one and injuring the other. The accident occurred after the two boys ran across a street as a three-vehicle convoy was passing. The injured boy was treated and released.
- The Confederation of Indian Industry announced the signing of a Preferential Trade Agreement between India and Afghanistan.
May 18: The Afghan government launched a training program to create a 50,000-strong national police force and 12,000 border police by 2008.
May 19: In a speech broadcast on Afghan television, President Karzai threatened to dissolve the government unless provincial leaders started paying their taxes. Karzai said he would call another Loya Jirga to form a new government in the coming two or three months if the situation did not improve.
May 20: The twelve provincial governors of Afghanistan signed an agreement to deliver millions of dollars of customs revenue owed to the central government. The finance ministry said that customs revenues exceeded half a billion dollars in 2002, but only $80 million reached Kabul. Under the agreement, Uzbek leader, General Abdul Rashid Dostum, would no longer serve as President Karzai's special envoy for the northern regions and other officials would have to follow the suit.
- In the Gardez region, Afghanistan, a U.S. Special Forces soldier was wounded when a homemade bomb exploded near a U.S. military vehicle.
- Pakistani Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Water & Power Aftab Ahmad Sherpao met with President Karzai to discuss repatriation of Afghan refugees.
May 21: Outside the U.S. embassy In Kabul, U.S. troops shot dead three or four Afghan soldiers and wounded four others when they mistakenly thought they were about to come under attack. "The U.S. soldiers thought the Afghan soldiers were aiming guns at them", a U.S. intelligence official said. "They panicked and opened fire."
May 22: In a Belgian court, the trial opened of 23 alleged Islamic militants linked to the murder of Afghan rebel Ahmad Shah Masood and the planning of anti-U.S. attacks in Europe. The two main defendants were Nizar Trabelsi and Tarek Maaroufi.
- In Paris, France, drug experts and foreign ministers from Europe and Asia met to address the massive flows of opium and heroin coming out of Afghanistan.
May 23: In collaboration with the Afghan Ministry of Health, the Afghan Ministry of Internal Affairs launched child census and polio vaccination campaign.
- Afghan Finance Minister Ashraf Ghani announced that the government would appoint new provincial customs directors to organize the flow of revenue to the central government.
- South of Jalalabad, two Afghan employees of Agro Action were hurt in a bomb attack.
May 24: About 80 demonstrators marched through downtown Kabul for several hours to protest the accidental slaying of three or four Afghan soldiers by U.S. troops on May 21. Some demonstrators hurled rocks. Some chanted "Death to America" and "Death to Karzai." A demand was made that the U.S. soldiers involved in the incident be handed over to the local authorities. At least one ISAF soldier was hurt and two vehicles damaged.
- In Afghanistan, unknown assailants threw grenades into the Jalalabad offices of Medair causing material damage but no injuries.
May 25: Afghan authorities arrested Mullah Janan, a suspected military commander of the former Taliban regime, and two of his aides. The authorities accused Janan of plotting attacks on Afghan government buildings.
May 26: A Ukrainian plane crashed near the Black Sea city of Trabzon in northeast Turkey, killing all aboard. The plane carried 13 crew-members (12 Ukrainians and one Belarusian) and 62 Spanish soldiers returning from a six-month peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan. Initially, the cause of the accident was blamed on thick fog, however some witnesses stated that the aircraft was afire.
- Afghan VP Nimartullah Shaharani arrived in Beijing, China for a five-day visit.
- Twelve shots were fired at an ISAF survey team from the Mine Dog Centre and the Mine Clearance Planning Agency in Rooza, Afghanistan.
May 27: Command of U.S. forces in Afghanistan were handed over from the U.S. Army's XVIII Airborne Corps to the U.S. 10th Mountain Division. Lt. Gen. Dan McNeill also ended his tour of duty. In a ceremony on the helicopter runway of Bagram Air Base, Maj. Gen. John Vines took over command.
- Taliban leader Mullah Ghausuddin and associate Mullah Mohammad were killed in a gun battle in Zabul province. An Afghan government soldier was wounded.
- In Beijing, Chinese VP Zeng Qinghong and Afghan VP Nimartullah Shaharani signed a US$1 million aid agreement for the Afghanistan reconstruction trust fund. The two leaders also agreed to re-establish the China Afghanistan Friendship Association and set up ties between Peking University and Kabul University.
- In Karachi, Pakistan, a seminar on the potential Turkmenistan-Afghanistan–Pakistan–India pipeline took place under the auspices of the Society of Petroleum Engineers Pakistan Section. Over 75 professionals attended.
- Iranian Minister of Commerce Mohammad Shariatmadari arrived in Kabul to inaugurate Iran's first executive industrial and commercial exhibition in Afghanistan.
May 28: Near Khost, Afghanistan, attackers set off a remote-controlled bomb near a vehicle carrying U.S. special forces. There were no casualties.
- In Gardez, Afghanistan, attackers fired two rockets toward a U.S. base. The rockets, however, fell far short of their target.
May 29: Fifteen kilometers south of Camp Warehouse near Kabul, Afghanistan, a German ISAF vehicle hit a mine killing one peacekeeper and injuring another.
- A team of U.S. investigators arrived in Kabul to investigate the deadly shooting on May 21 in which U.S. Marines guarding the American Embassy killed three Afghan soldiers.
- In Afghanistan, two men were killed by an exploding mine at Kabul's former royal palace, apparently while planting the device.
May 30: As a U.S. special forces was moving along a road 50 kilometres south of Kabul, a homemade bomb was detonated, lightly wounding an Afghan soldier travelling with the group.
- Attackers fired two rockets toward the U.S. base in Orgun, in Paktika Province, Afghanistan. There were no casualties.
May 31: Attackers fired a rocket toward the U.S. base in Asadabad in Kunar Province, Afghanistan. There were no casualties.
Read more about this topic: 2003 In Afghanistan
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