Taliban killed 13 members of Hazara ethnic group: Report

The Taliban killed not less than 13 members of the Hazara ethnic group, together with a 17-year-old lady, within the central province of Daykundi, shortly after they took energy in Afghanistan, based on a brand new report from Amnesty International.

On August 30, a convoy of 300 Taliban fighters entered Khidr district and killed not less than 11 former members of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), 9 of whom had been taken to a close-by river basin the place they had been executed shortly after having surrendered, the rights group mentioned in its report printed on Tuesday.

An adolescent, recognized by the title of Masuma, was killed in crossfire after the Taliban focused Afghan forces who had been trying to flee the world. Another civilian, Fayaz, a newly-wed in his 20s, was additionally amongst these killed within the crossfire.

The ANSF members who had been killed ranged in age from 26 to 46, Amnesty mentioned. All the victims had been Hazara, who had been persecuted throughout the Taliban’s first stint in energy between 1996 and 2001.

It is the second killing of Hazaras documented by Amnesty. At least 9 Hazara males had been killed by Taliban fighters in Ghazni province in July earlier than the group captured energy, Amnesty reported on August 19.

Both the Taliban and their rivals, the Islamic State Khorasan Province, ISKP (ISIS-Okay), an ISIL affiliate, have been accused of focusing on the Hazara folks, who make up the vast majority of Afghanistan’s Shia inhabitants.

By September 1, the Taliban had denied the killings. Saidqullah Abed, the Taliban appointed police chief for Daykundi, would solely affirm that considered one of their fighters had been injured within the crossfire.

Raihana Azad, a former member of Parliament for the province, additionally verified Amnesty’s report back to Al Jazeera, saying the occasions of August 30 amounted to “inhumane mass killings” carried out by the Taliban.

She mentioned what transpired in Khidr was in direct violation of the Taliban’s claims of a nationwide normal amnesty for former safety forces and authorities staff.

“These cold-blooded executions are further proof that the Taliban are committing the same horrific abuses they were notorious for during their previous rule of Afghanistan,” mentioned Agnes Callamard, Amnesty International’s secretary-general.

During their five-year rule within the 1990s, the Taliban had been accused of massacring tons of of Hazaras within the provinces of Balkh and Bamiyan.

Zaman Sultani, South Asia researcher at Amnesty International, mentioned the killings in Daykundi observe a transparent sample by the Taliban.

He factors to an announcement that interviewees attributed to a senior Taliban official as proof: “I have killed people for the past 20 years. Killing is easy for me. I can kill again,” the official reportedly advised Daykundi residents.

Azad, the previous MP, mentioned the Taliban’s abuses in Daykundi don’t finish with the killings.

She says that for the reason that Taliban captured the province on August 14, a day earlier than former President Ashraf Ghani fled the nation, 1000’s of households have been pressured from their properties within the Gizab and Pato districts of the mountainous province.

A listing compiled by residents reveals that as many as 20,000 households had been forcibly displaced throughout not less than 10 completely different villages during the last month and a half.

Daykundi residents chatting with Al Jazeera mentioned that when the Taliban got here to their properties, the fighters claimed that the households had been illegally occupying the land or {that a} Taliban shura had determined the land “belongs to the people”.

No monetary means

Azad says the large swathe of lands taken by the Taliban makes their reasoning onerous to imagine.

“If it was just one village it may be possible that these were some kind of legal issues, but it doesn’t make sense that there are land disputes all across this many villages.”

She says lots of the households had been living on their land for generations, “They had the deeds in their hands.”

Mohammad*, a resident of the Gizab district, is a kind of folks.

The 42-year-old says his spouse and youngsters had been at home when the Taliban got here to their doorstep demanding they vacate the property on September 23. Frightened and uncertain of what to do, all 9 folks in Mohammad’s household left the home that they had lived in for many years.

“I was a child when that house was built. I planted the trees outside it myself,” Mohammad mentioned to Al Jazeera from Kabul, the place his household now lives.

Before coming to the capital, Mohammad, a former training ministry employee, tried to attraction to the Taliban, however he says it was no use, regardless that the fighters who got here to his home had been from the identical district as him.

“I tried to explain to the Islamic Emirate, but they just said, ‘It’s been decided that your land now belongs to the people.’”

Even his deed was of no use. He was advised the choice was made in accordance with Islamic regulation. Like Azad, although, Mohammad has problem reconciling the Taliban’s justification, saying that even in a Sharia courtroom, land disputes can take months, if not years, to settle.

“These things don’t just happen in a matter of weeks,” Mohammad mentioned.

Azad, the previous MP, mentioned that with the Afghan winter quick approaching, these pressured evictions would result in a humanitarian disaster in a mountainous province the place it may well take as much as 14 hours to travel from a district to the capital of Nili.

“Without their homes and lands, these people have no financial means to move anywhere else, so they’re just left to live in tents in fields,” Azad mentioned.

Daykundi is taken into account considered one of Afghanistan’s poorest and least-developed provinces. Most of the lads within the province head off to different cities or Iran and Pakistan as youngsters to work as day labourers or in mines.

These pressured displacements appear to be consistent with different studies on the Taliban earlier than their takeover of Afghanistan. In July, Human Rights Watch issued a report from the Northern province of Kunduz alleging the Taliban pressured not less than 400 households to flee their properties.

“The forced displacement of civilians is unlawful unless required for the security of the affected civilians or is absolutely necessary for military reasons. Retaliatory attacks are a form of collective punishment and are also prohibited,” Patricia Gossman, affiliate Asia director at Human Rights Watch, advised Al Jazeera.

*Names modified to guard their identities.

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