KABUL (Pajhwok): A newly released survey shows people with disabilities have little presence in the peace process. The study stresses on active role of these people in peace talks and a post-peace government.
The survey conducted by Afghan Landmine Survivors Organization (ALSO) interviewed 140 people (95 men and 45 women) with disabilities in Kabul, Kandahar, Balkh, Bamyan, Daikundi and Herat provinces in early March.
The interviewees said that most of people with disabilities supported the peace process and they wanted presence of their representatives in peace related institutes.
The survey shows that 90 percent participants emphasized on the protection of the rights of people with disabilities after a peace agreement.
According to the survey, absence of women with disabilities in peace process and violation global values about disabilities which Afghanistan is part of, were the concerns of the respondents.
The survey shows that 51 percent of the participants asked for presence of people with disabilities in peace related institutes such as the State Ministry in Peace Affairs, High Council of National Reconciliation and the Afghan peace negotiating team.
Thirty-five others stressed on the presence of representatives of people with disabilities and war victims in the composition of negotiating team.
Mohammad Ali Mujtaba, head of Advocacy Committee on the Rights of People with Disabilities, expressed concern over the absence of handicapped people in the peace process and said that High Council of National Reconciliation should include representatives of these people in peace negotiations.
All rights of people with disabilities, particularly social and civil freedoms of women with disabilities should be ensured in a government after peace, he said.
“Achievements made about the rights of people with disabilities over the last two decades should also be protected,” he added.
Ahmad Shah Azimi, an advocate for the rights of handicapped people, said that Asian Foundation’s figures from 2019 showed around four million people were disabled in Afghanistan.
He called the people with disabilities the main victims of war and said, “Khalilzad did not negotiate with handicapped people who are around four million even for a day, how the government after a peace agreement would serve these people?”
He emphasized that people with disabilities should also be given political rights in a post-peace government and the peace should be justice and stability-centric.