Since mid-September, conflict has escalated between the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces and the Taliban in Sar-e-Pul, Jawzjan and Balkh provinces. Parliamentary elections will be held on 20 October and violence will likely continue in the runup to the vote. An unknown number of people have been displaced in the affected provinces. More people will probably be displaced as fighting can be expected to continue in the coming weeks. Continued insecurity will also mean that people are unlikely to be able to return home quickly and will be in need of humanitarian assistance. Lack of security in Sar-e-Pul and Jawzjan provinces will prevent IDPs and host communities from accessing basic services.