Statement of Finnish Afghans on terrorist attack, which happened in July 23 on Hazara protest in Kabul
In a terrorist attack on Saturday 23rd July 2016 at least 80 people have been killed and hundreds injured after two suicide bombers struck a peaceful demonstration, in which the people of Afghanistan were exercising their democratic rights and peacefully protesting in thousands. What was meant to be a peaceful protest, turned into one of the deadliest attacks in this year in Afghanistan.
The victims of the protest were from the Afghan Hazara ethnic group. Their demonstration took place as a result of the most recent discrimination against them. Afghan government made a decision to change a part of the 500kV transmission power line, which was planned to pass through Bamiyan to Kabul and then to the other provinces in the East and South, but the Afghan government changed this plan. For this reason people protest against the government decision.
However the decision of government in May, brought a lot of people on streets during last three months in and outside of Afghanistan. The first demonstration in Kabul on 16 May 2016 was one of the biggest civic protests in recent Afghan history. It led to an unparalleled level of public debate around social justice, equal development and rights of communities, a great indication of Afghanistan’s democratic transformation in the past fifteen years. Unfortunately, the Afghan government has insisted on its decision and didn’t accept request of the people.
Afghan government neglected its responsibility to provide the necessary security during the demonstration in result many people in a terrorist attack died and injured. The government should take full responsibility for its shortcomings.
In the last 15 years, the Hazaras have supported the international community in Afghanistan and they have been actively involved in the democratic process. It seems that the Afghan government has ignored them and is not willing to listen to their legitimate demands off being treated equally.
We have gathered here to condemn the bomb attack on civilians protest in Kabul, and call for the immediate prosecution of attack, which is according to the international law, it was a crime against humanity. We also express our sincere condolences to the family and friends of the victims.
We urge the international community, in particular the Finish government, to put pressure on the Afghan government to respond to the civic demands of the people regarding the electricity grid before the situation further get worse. Responding to the legitimate demands of the people will increase public trust in the government, ensure long-term stability, peace and democracy in Afghanistan.