Reflection of RAWA press conference in the Press
September 21, 2001 - Peshawar

On September 21, 2001 RAWA held a press conference in Peshawar Press Club to denounce the terrorist attack on the US and express RAWA stands on possible attack on Afghanistan. The press conference was supposed to be held in Islamabad on September 14 but the Pakistani police refused to grant permission.

Attacks on Kabul not to end tension: RAWA

The Frontier Post, September 22, 2001
Bureau Report

PESHAWAR: The Revolutionary Association of Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) on Friday, asked the world community to stop financial and political support to both the Taliban and Northern Alliance and added that the people of Afghanistan had nothing to do with Osama and his accomplices.

Addressing the press conference here at Peshawar Press Club, Saima Karim said that attacks on Afghanistan and killing its most ruined and destitute people would not in any way decrease the grief of the American people, adding that US should differentiate between the people of Afghanistan and a handful of fundamentalists.

She regretted that the world was shocked with the horrific attacks on the US and RAWA also condemn for this act of violence and terror, saying that the RAWA had already warned the US and its allies not to support the treacherous, criminal, anti-democratic and anti-women rights elements.

She claimed that Osama was the blue-eyed colleague of CIA and now the Taliban and Osama were the prime suspects by the US officials after the attacks, saying that the US should consider the root cause of this terrible event.

"People of Afghanistan are not terrorists and also in a position to bear more terrorism as that Afghanistan is passing through terrible time and ruined by attacks from last twenty years," she added.

She stated that the government of Zahir Shah would be a better one than Taliban if he was given a chance, adding that the world should differentiate between the poor and devastated people of Afghanistan.

RAWA supports ex-king's peace plan

Dawn, September 22, 2001
Bureau Report

PESHAWAR, Sept 21: The Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) has said that if Osama bin Laden is arrested by the United States it will not be a permanent solution of terrorism being faced by the entire world and will certainly not lessen Afghan people's misery.

Speaking at a news conference at the Peshawar Press Club on Friday, Saima Karim, a spokeswoman for the RAWA, said that short-term and unrealistic policies of the US and its allies had allowed scores of Osamas to play havoc with the lives of innocent people in the world. "Afghanistan has been harboring thousands of such people for years and they can harm societies", she added.

She said that for the last several years, Afghanistan had become a safe haven for terrorists. She expressed concern over recent attacks in New York and Washington and the killings of innocent people. "The RAWA has always denounced terrorism as it has been facing this menace since the coup in Afghanistan in April 1978," she added.

The US, Saima Karim said, had encouraged the trend of terrorism when its policy-makers had extended military and financial support to fundamentalist forces in Afghanistan.

When Russian forces pulled out of Afghanistan, all democracy-loving forces had made a resolve to reconstruct Afghanistan, but the US dissociated itself from the Afghan problem, enabling the fundamentalists to ignite civil war in the country.

She extended full support to the peace initiative launched by former Afghan King Zahir Shah, now living in exile in Italy.

Responding to a question, she said her organization was opposed to the Taliban and considered the Northern Alliance the other side of the same coin. "The RAWA believes in the political solution of the problem, which had compelled thousands of Afghans to take shelter in neighboring countries." We favour a political solution of the problem", she added.

US should differentiate between Afghans and Taliban: RAWA

The Statesman, September 22, 2001
By Shaheen Bouneri

Peshawar: Saima Kareem, of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) has said that the US government and people should know that there is a vast difference between the poor and devastated people of Afghanistan and the terrorist Jehadis and Taliban criminals.

Addressing a news conferences on Friday at the Peshawar Press Club here, she said that attacks on the frustrated and exploited people of Afghanistan would be tantamount to another terrorist action which would further complicate the situation.

She said that vast and indiscriminate military attacks on a country that had been facing permanent disaster for more than two decades would not be a matter of pride "We don't think such an attack would be the expression of the will of the American people."

She said that on September 11, 2001 the world was stunned at the horrific terrorist attacks on the United States "RAWA stands with the rest of the world in expressing its sorrow and condemnation for this barbaric act of violence and terror. RAWA had already told the United State not to support the most treacherous, most criminal, most anti-democracy and anti-women Islamic fundamentalist parties because later these very Jehadi outfits and the Taliban committed heinous crime against our people.

They would feel no shame in committing similar crimes against the American people whom they consider "infidels". In order to gain maintain power, these elements were ready to turn easily into any criminal force.

She said that RAWA would refer to the fact that unfortunately it was the government of the United States which supported General Ziaul Haq in opening schools from which the Taliban gradually emerged.

In the same manner, its was clear to all that Osama bin Ladin had been the blue-eyed boy of CIA. But more painful was the fact that American politician had not learnt any lesson from the pro-fundamentalist policies in the war-ravaged country and they were still supporting this or that fundamentalist band or leader.

In RAWA opinion any kind of support to the fundamentalist Taliban and Jihadi outfits was tantamount to actually trampling democratic and human rights including those of women values, Saima Kareem observed.

"If it is established that the suspects of the terrorists attacks are outside the US, our constant claim that fundamentalist terrorists would ultimately devour their creators, stands vindicated once more." She said.

The RAWA's chairperson posed the question that now that the Taliban and Osama were considered to be the prime suspects by the US administration, would America subject Afghanistan to a military attack similar to the one in 1998 and kill thousands of innocent Afghan for the crime committed by the Taliban and Osama? Did the US think that through such attack with thousands of deprived, poor and innocent people of Afghanistan as its victims, it would be able to wipe out the root cause of terrorism or would further spread terrorism with its wanton attacks?

Saima said that the American government and people should look for the root cause of terrorist attacks in New York and Washington.

"While we once again announce our solidarity and deep sorrow with the people of the US, we also believe that attacking Afghanistan and killing its ruined and destitute people will not in any was decrease the grief of the American people. We sincerely wish and hope that the great American people could differentiate between the people of Afghanistan and a handful of fundamentalist terrorists.

Our heart go out to the people of the US. Down with terrorism." Saima Kareem concluded.

The report of RAWA press conference was also published in almost all Urdu and Pushto newspapers of Pakistan.

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