Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Saturday, November 28th, 2020

Afghanistan Must not be the Slaughterhouse of Civilians Anymore

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Afghanistan Must not be the Slaughterhouse of  Civilians Anymore

Sadly, the local media news shows that Afghanistan has become a slaughterhouse for Afghan civilians in recent weeks and months. Availing the defensive position of national security and goodwill of Afghan government and people, the Taliban launch madly attacks on armed and innocent civilians. the Taliban has always misused the goodwill and defensive position of the Afghan government and people. It was the goodwill of Afghan people and government that released a large of such deceived prisoners who took arm against their people and country but they have returned to the battlefield.  Despite taking oath on holy Quran, they did not stop killing civilians. In recent days, the Ministry of Interior Affairs informed that 180 civilians have been killed and 375 others wounded in Taliban offensive attacks within the past 27 days. Based a report which released about two months ago, nearly 3500 civilians including 340 children were either killed or wounded in first six months of 2020 in the country.
Although the exact number of  recent civilian casualties in the Helmand war is not yet known, initial media reports indicate that in the first two days of the war alone, at least 70 civilian wounded were taken to a provincial emergency hospital, and ten died. According to UNAMA, the number of civilian deaths and injuries are the main indicator of severity of the violence in 2020, but seemingly it is more worrying in recent weeks. the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Afghanistan also says that 35,000 people have been displaced while dozens of social services centers such as hospitals and educational centers were destroyed or stopped providing services due to recent  crazy violence in Helmand.  Based on local media news out of thousands of displaced people, only a limited number of them have received basic aid. Overall, the humanitarian agencies have extremely expressed their concerns about the safety and security of the displaced people.
Despite the release of prisoners based on the US-Taliban agreement, the group is doing very little to stick to the ceasefire or violence reduction as it had agreed to. However, it was  predictable to happen so because the Taliban have not been good at keeping promises in the past. there were some optimism that Pakistan was wielding some influence over the Taliban for bringing them into true peace the process, but practically it has also produced a reverse result up to the date. the entire purpose of that peace process was to lead towards peace but it is likely to led to peace. The Special Envoy to Afghanistan for the Trump administration, Zalmay Khalilzad, has also recently warned that continued unrest and violence in Afghanistan could endanger the agreement reached some weeks ago, during talks between the Taliban and Afghanistan government. The latest waves of concerns and pessimisms arose after Taliban repeated attacks in the Helmand province in the south of Afghanistan. Khalilzad has stressed that any deviation from agreement reached could endanger peace, and throw the entire region into yet more chaos and yet further fighting. The Taliban have meanwhile said that any attack in Afghanistan will be the responsibility of the US and will not be accepted.
The Taliban and its supporters must note that no friendship, no interests and no peace will be built on the ocean of blood and civilian massacre. The defenseless Afghan civilian must not be massacred anymore; any types of attacks on civilian is attack on peace, negotiation and humanity.
The peace talks and sweet promise are meaningless without ceasefire or protection of civilian such as children, man and women.  it is nearly two decades that thousands of civilians and non-civilians have been killed in the country, but no one has reached their goal and demand by killing innocent people and destruction of public properties. If the Taliban is really committed in Islamic values, they must understand that killing of innocent people is the greatest crime in Islam. If the Taliban is really Afghan, they must not to be misused by any intelligence networks against their land and people. If they do not believe on these values, at least they must understand that no group can reach their goals by killing of innocent children, men and women. No group can dominate on heart of people with by attacking on mosques, schools, civilian homes and public properties.
By and large, the Taliban and Taliban supporters are directly or indirectly responsible for civilian causalities in the country. In past two decades, Taliban were frequently blamed using civilian as human shield and so they have been killed or massacred in conflicts of Afghanistan. the Taliban supporters also cannot exculpate themselves versus these many bloodshed and innocent killings in the country.
They must realize that the brave defensive force of Afghanistan are not weak but they consider Taliban as their brothers who are deceived by intelligence networks of the regional countries.  Pakistan should prove practically its good-will as we proved our good-will as a brother country and as a second home for Afghan people. We repeatedly encourage the government of Afghanistan to consider all legitimate concerns of Pakistan in the account. Afghan people and government has also ensured everyone including Pakistan that no one is allowed to threaten our brothers and sister in Pakistan from Afghanistan’s soil. Therefore, no country should behave Afghanistan  as one of its state in her foreign policy. Everyone must note that Afghanistan is an independent country with a proud history of five thousand years known as graveyard of the powerful Empires.

Mohammad Zahir Akbari is the permanent writer of the Daily Outlook Afghanistan. He can be reached at mohammadzahirakbari@gmail.com

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