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Officer Team Statement on current situation in Afghanistan

The Sabbatical Officer Team stand with all of our students who are affected by the current situation in Afghanistan.

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The Sabbatical Officer Team stand with all of our students who are affected by the current situation in Afghanistan. Former president of CU Afghan Society, Muhammad Fawad Azizi, wrote a piece to explain the issues arising there: 

“Afghanistan has once again fallen to the hands of the Taliban, an extremist militant group that once ruled over Afghanistan from 1996-2001. Taliban Forces entered and took over Kabul on Sunday 15th of August after capturing nearly all the provincial capitals in Afghanistan. 

The president of Afghanistan is believed to have fled the country to avoid further bloodshed in Kabul; meanwhile, some government officials close to President Ghani state that he has been forcefully asked to leave to country. The situation remains dire as thousands of Afghans are trying to flee the country for safety. The Afghan people, mainly women and girls, are worried about their safety and are fearful of going out of their homes. However, the Taliban have recently told the media that they will allow women's education and work subject to Islamic rulings. 

Thousands of Afghans within the country have been displaced, some have lost their houses in airstrikes, and others have lost their family's breadwinners. Over the past few weeks, there have been a considerable number of campaigns and fundraisings launched outside of Afghanistan to help the Afghan people who are displaced and have suffered great losses. 

People living out of Afghanistan can help greatly by contributing to the foundations that are raising funds for those in need. Additionally, many countries such as the United States, Canada, and the UK have announced to relocate those Afghans who helped and served their troops. These are mainly local interpreters. However, students and social activists can also help by emailing their local MPs to launch new settlement schemes to help the vulnerable Afghans, mainly women, and girls who are believed to be the most in danger under the Taliban's regime.

Lastly, those who have Afghan friends can also help by checking up on them and see if they are doing well. This can have a positive impact as Afghans have been suffering from great mental and psychological stress. Many Afghans still have family members stuck in Afghanistan, which cause a significant amount of stress for both Afghans in and out of Afghanistan.” 

Jasmine Stubbings and Aimée Gowans of CU Gender Equality Society would also like to extend their support and solidarity to any women in or from Afghanistan who might be suffering because of recent events. They wrote: 

“The rule of the Taliban massively endangers the freedom, safety and lives of hundreds of women and children. Whilst the Taliban have vowed to respect women's rights and safety, we have seen their cruel and misogynistic legislation with regards to education, safety and freedom in previous years, and we must ensure that women's rights are protected. Below this we will link Charities you can donate to, petitions you can sign and articles you can read to educate yourselves on these issues (as we have and will continue to do). As well as this please email your MP's, and keep talking about and recognising Afghani women, and the struggles that they are facing 

If anybody has any suggestions for more ways we can help as a society, please feel free to email us at genderequality.su@coventry.ac.uk or DM us on Instagram at @cugenderequality”. 

So what can you do to help? 

1. Write to your local MP. Ask that they hold the government to their promise to allow 20,000 refugees into the UK. Also suggest that they work quicker to ensure that infrastructure is in place to ensure that we can take on the 5000 Afghan refugees promised this year. Write to your MP here: https://www.writetothem.com/ 

2. Sign petitions. A quick and easy way to amplify Afghan voices is to sign petitions and get their issues heard and discussed on national, and global, platforms. Some current petitions are: 

3. Donate. As students, there is no pressure at all to donate - however, if you have any spare money, it could be worth considering a small donation which will support charities that are providing emergency aid to the people of Afghanistan. Some charities to donate to: 

4. Reach out to your Afghan friends and check on them. The present issues are causing huge levels of mental and physical suffering and checking in on a friend could make a huge difference. 

If you, or anyone you know, is affected by these events, please contact: 

  • Coventry Refugee and Migrant Centre: https://www.covrefugee.org/support-us support asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants in the Coventry area.

  • The Students' Union Advice Centre can offer help with issues if you are directly affected in any way by the events in Afghanistan: https://www.cusu.org/advice/

  • SHOUT 85258: Shout 85258 is a free, confidential, anonymous mental health text support service that you can access 24/7. To start a conversation, text the word 'SHOUT' to 85258.

Please take the time to educate yourselves and those around you regarding the imminent humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan and do as much as you can to offer help. Please stay safe.

Your Sabbatical Officer Team.

 
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