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RAWA statement on UN sanctions on the Taliban

Only Sanctions will not end terrorism

For many years, RAWA has reported the evil acts committed by fundamentalist parties in Afghanistan and the surrounding region. By now, these reports have been proven and confirmed by the governments of many countries.

Now the UN and other countries are considering the imposition of economic sanctions and other restrictions on the Taliban. However, before pursuing these new policies, it is crucial that we examine previous policies-if only briefly-that were erroneously embraced. Then the following question must be answered:

Why turn Afghanistan into a nation of terrorists such as Osama Bin Laden, who are responsible for training and supporting agents of unimaginable human rights violations? In fact, terrorists like Osama Bin Laden have virtually created these agents of terror out of nothing. UN sanctions on the Taliban, blanketed by humanitarian claims, bring no benefit to our people if these sanctions are not accompanied by efforts to banish fundamentalism of a Taliban and Jihadi nature from Afghanistan.

UN sanctions on the Taliban will not solve the problems of Afghanistan because:

1- The UN must first impose sanctions on those countries that are directly influencing the internal affairs of Afghanistan. These countries are nurturing Afghanistan's supreme thieves and murderers.

2- UN sanctions have been considered only for the Taliban, while Ahmad Shah Masuod and his allies have not been taken into account.

3- Differentiating between Taliban and Jihadis in fact means that involved countries are trying to take one side under pressure and make the other side the "leaders" and then substitute them with the Taliban.

4- Sanctions will not severely hamper Taliban activities, because the Taliban has long been looting Afghanistan of its wealth and ammunition, stockpiling it for just such a rainy day. The Taliban has also drained the very blood of the Afghan people, and it is these people who will suffer most from UN sanctions. If the UN or countries such as the USA are seeking a solution to Afghanistan's problems, they must start by disarming the Taliban.

What the UN and US can do immediately is to try the Taliban and Jihadis-these treacherous thieves-as war criminals. It is the proper time for the US and other countries that have fostered these fundamentalist parties to apologize to the Afghan people and take steps toward healing old wounds.

RAWA, along with the Afghan people and especially the ill-fated women of the country, welcome the condemnation of the Taliban and Jihadis by any country or authority. At the same time, we regard it as insufficient. We ask the UN and Mr. Bill Clinton to put these fundamentalist criminals on trial.

We especially ask the help of Gen. Parwaiz Musharaf, who says he will not allow the Pakistani people to suffer further from famine, corruption and economic bankruptcy. Do not the people of Afghanistan have the same rights to democracy, peace and security? Shouldn't our people have the right to ask for the trial of these treacherous warriors, who for ten years have destroyed our country? Should our women have no recourse for survival except prostitution, beggary and suicide? Their husbands, brothers and fathers were patriotic and freedom loving, and yet they were killed by men nourished by financial, military and political aid from former governments of Pakistan and other countries.

Gen. Parwaiz Musharaf and other government leaders must keep in mind that if steps are not taken to block the Taliban and Jihadis, the entire region and particularly Pakistan will burn in the fire of fundamentalism. Not only regional countries will suffer; the US will be the most affected by this tragedy. Therefore, the US should not only seek the arrest of Osama Bin Laden, but also stop our country's "Ladens" from violating human rights by summoning them to the International Court for trial.

RAWA, a pro-democracy and pro-women's rights organization, knows that the fundamentalist Taliban will eventually be punished by the Afghan people. We hope that current efforts by the US, Pakistan and other countries to disarm the Taliban and create a stable government or Loya Jirga (grand assembly) will not be motivated solely by political interests.

We strongly believe that countries remaining loyal to the Taliban and Jihadis will one day be summoned, in the court of humankind.

Let the Afghan people, along with other people of the world, enter the new millennium in a state of democracy and peace.

Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA)
October 20, 1999