ISLAMABAD, April 27: Afghan refugees held a demonstration outside UN offices here on Tuesday against what they called the continuation of Taliban's fundamentalist policies , increased terrorist acts and violation of human rights and called the UN to expand its peace process in the war-torn country.

They condemned the government to letting loose the Jihadis to plunder billions of dollars foreign aid meant for country's reconstruction and the country's assets and their appointments on key positions.

The demonstration, organized by the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (Rawa), called for disarming and removing of warlords from key posts, and setting up of genuine democracy in the country.

Over 300 protesters, mostly women and children from refugee camps, assembled in front of a UN offices at the Constitution Avenue to mark the day when the so-called "Jihadis" took power in Kabul on April 28, 1992 and the Saur Revolution of April 27, 1978.

A statement distributed on the occasion read: "The gloom of 28th April is still dominant in our country and is more sinister than the 27th." The protesters condemned the acts of the Northern Alliance, which has taken specific areas of the country under its control and is said to be unwilling to show allegiance towards any central government, declaring them a "gang of criminals."

They criticized the Karzai government for trying to rewrite history, portraying Ahmed Shah Masoud as a hero, appointing jihadis and warlords on key posts in the army, as ministers, diplomats and curving new provinces to please war lords.

The protesters called for "independence, democracy and respect for human rights and power to the people of Afghanistan. Member of Rawa's Foreign Affairs Committee, Danish Hamid, said that the Northern Alliance and the Taliban were similar in their complete disregard of human rights and civil liberties, stating that both ruled through "control of gun."

Talking to Dawn, she stated that the country and its people had suffered extensively during the Northern Alliance's 1992-96 rule and were still suffering at their hands once again due to their heinous acts, promoting terror and insecurity throughout the country.

"There is no real security or peace in the country," she claimed, suggesting that women and children are still suffering as a result. She stated that while Rawa did not consider Hamid Karzai an ideal leader, he would be acceptable if he discontinues his support to the Northern Alliance.

She regretted that the world powers such as US, despite knowing the situation in Afghanistan, are supporting those who committed crime against humanity for their self-interests.

Ms Hamid urged the UN to take an active concrete steps for restoring peace and normalcy in the country. In response to a question, she criticized Pakistan for supporting fundamentalists elements.

Speaking to reporters, Rawa member Ms Suhaila said there was little hope that the upcoming elections would change the current situation in Afghanistan by ushering in democracy as the true representatives of the people would not be allowed to contest the polls.

Accompanying the Rawa protesters were 12 Japanese members of the International Criminal Tribunal for Afghanistan (ICTA) who had come to express their support for peace and justice in Afghanistan.



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