Other important leaders included Uzbek warlord Abdul Rashid Dostum and Tajik warlord Ismail Khan, a member of Rabbani and Massoud’s Jamiat-e Islami.Iran, along with Russia, provided arms and funding to the Northern Alliance throughout the civil war, while Pakistan and Saudi Arabia supported the Taliban.But when a US-led coalition invaded Afghanistan in 2001 to overthrow the Taliban, Iran was not disappointed.Iran played a key role in Afghanistan’s state-formation and reconstruction process in the immediate aftermath of the Taliban’s ouster.
Both Afghanistan and Iran have a remarkably young population.
While the Iranian leaders welcomed the fall of the Taliban, they also saw the presence of American troops in neighboring Afghanistan as a national security threat.
Tehran’s support for insurgent groups in Afghanistan, including the Taliban, has been a source of great anxiety for the ISAF and Afghan forces struggling to stabilize Afghanistan.
The Taliban, for its part, backed Sunni Islamist militants who were launching attacks against the Iranian regime.
In 1998, Taliban forces captured Mazar-e Sharif in northern Afghanistan from Dostum and massacred thousands of Hazara civilians, in addition to nine Iranians with diplomatic credentials.