Afghanistan safe haven for terrorist groups: US

August 23, 2000

ISLAMABAD (NNI): The United States has said that violence has turned Afghanistan into a safe haven for one of the world most notorious terrorist groups, Al-Qaida where it is openly welcomed.

"This group is responsible for the killing of thousands of women, children and men. The violence has isolated Afghanistan on international level. It has made the life of the people of Afghanistan miserable. Now is it time that this violence should be put to an end, said an editorial of the Voice of America which reflects the viewpoints of the US government.

It said that violence in Afghanistan has forced more than 2.5 million people to take shelter abroad while lakhs of other were displaced inside Afghanistan. The violence has ruined each and every thing in Afghanistan and economy is nonexistent. All the efforts for economic revival face failure due to this violence.

It deplored and condemned the killing of seven UN employees by armed assailants in Dara-e-Sabaz of Badghis province on August 5. These people were employees of a UN organization who are protecting the people of Afghanistan against nearly 70,000 land mines and 7.5 million unexploded bombs scattered in the entire Afghanistan.

These people were attacked at a time when they were returning from an area where they were doing their duties of creating awareness among the people about the danger of these land mines and protective measures against it. The elements responsible for this cowardice act could not be identified, the broadcast said. Those fell pray to the attack do not include only those who were killed and wounded rather those Afghans as well for whom these land mines are a threat. The attack also reveals that killings and gross human rights violations are the direct result of fighting, instability and lawlessness which has gripped Afghanistan since 1979. Fighting between the Taliban and opposition northern alliance has been continuing without any respect for rules of war. Indiscriminate shelling on the civilian areas and deliberate destruction of homes, food supply and irrigation system is a routine matter. Thousand of civilians were killed, tortured, molested and looted. A number of other were arrested and kept in miserable condition. Kidnapping for ransom is a routine matters, the broadcast said.

h t t p : / / w w w . r a w a . o r g