RAWA Marks the 16th Death Anniversary of Meena
February 4, 2003 - Islamabad

Press Coverage

Asma Jahangir addressing the event

Asma Jahangir, especial reporter of the UN Commission on Human Rights and the most prominent human rights activist of Pakistan delivering speech in the event.

Parts of her speech:

"We are all here not to morn Meena but to celebrate her. Because of her, a movement was formed and a movement is continuously growing amongst women for calling democracy and secularism. It is not the women of Pakistan that can teach RAWA and the women of Afghanistan how to organize themselves, I think it is time today that we learn from RAWA because what we need in Pakistan is also awareness movement that is very strongly based upon secularism and democracy.

It is a share belief, that, a secular and democratic Afghanistan --which I am certain, which I am hopeful that we will see because of the resolve of the people of Afghanistan-- will give a sustenance to Pakistan that will also become democratic and secular, and together we can move forward as two progressive nations. It is therefore very important that today I say to my friends, finally to RAWA, that you have given us courage. Thank you my friends, and I hope we can follow your path and we can have perhaps not a RAWA but a PAWA in Pakistan to follow your path."

A large number of Pakistanis and Afghans participated in the function. Some women came from inside Afghanistan to take part in the anniversary of Meena.

Around 600 people participated in the function organized by RAWA to mark the death anniversary of its founding leader Meena.

Some of the speakers:

Tahira Abdullah, well-known Pakistani women's rights activist.

Shoib Hashimi professor of economy and well-known Pakistan TV artist.

Javid Kohistani, President of Nehzat-e-Azadi wa Democracy Afghanistan
(Freedom and Democracy Movement of Afghanistan)

Mohammad Yassin Kasib, President of Shura-e- Islami Hambastagi Miliat ha-e- Afghanistan (Islamic Council of Solidarity of Afghanistan's Nationalities)

Tariq Ahmad Khan, Provincial Director of Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP)

Afzal Khamosh, Gen. Secretary of Pakistan Communist Mazdor Kisan Party.

Fakhria Asad, head of women's council of Afghanistan's Human Rights and Safeguard of Environment Organization.

Shan Pacha Shinwari, President of Da Afghanistan da Soli Mubarizino Democrat Gund (Afghanistan's Peace Freedom-Fighters Democratic Party)

A group of RAWA students presented patriotic songs in Pushto and Dari.

RAWA handicrafts on sale at a corner of the hall.

Table of RAWA publications, awards and certificates.

Scenes of a theatric play presented in the function:

"Path of Light", an abstract theater piece was the result of voluntarily efforts of our great supporter, talented Portuguese theater artist Paulina Almeida (right) who for the past few months was only in service to give artistic education to students of RAWA's schools and orphanages in Pakistan.

Valeria (left) an Italian supporter of RAWA also took part in the play.

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