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Surge in violence spurs calls for ceasefire

AT News

KABUL: As uptick in Taliban attacks is threatening the prospects of lasting peace in the country, the disabled people in Kunduz province are demanding both the Afghan government and the Taliban to negotiate a peaceful settlement and end the war.

Dozens of disabled people are seen embroidering on the side of the road in Kunduz city.

Gol Ahmad, 30, is one of them. He says four years ago, when the city of Kunduz fell to the Taliban, a mortar shell hit his home, amputating one of his legs. “I’m earning $1 a day and I am facing many challenges. My children are going to school and I cannot cover their expenses,” he said.

Gol Ahmad now embroiders on a side road in Kunduz city to make ends meet for his family. “Life was very good before I had my leg amputated. Since I lost my leg, life has become bitter for me. We ask the government and the Taliban to reach an agreement,” he said. “Let there be peace, so that people like me can no longer be crippled and their lives made bitter.

Faizuddin, 50, is another disabled man, who lost a leg to a landmine explosion 10 years ago. It happened when Faizuddin had gone to Dasht-e-Archi district to work. On the way back, their car collided with an improvised explosive device.

He says his daily income is as low as $1 and $1.5. “Sometimes, I go home empty-handed,” he said. “We want peace, no more human beings to experience the pain of losing loved ones and limbs,” he said.

He said people desperately need peace to be restored in the country. “We are tired of war. If both sides have desire for peace, they must go ahead without excuses. We have had enough with this war,” he stated.

The number of disabled people in Kunduz province reaches thousands. The Directorate of Martyrs and Disabled Affairs says that only the number of disabled people registered in this office is more than 3,300 people, but there are also some who are not registered in this office.

Almost all of them want the peace talks in Qatar to culminate in peace and the war in the country to end, although the Qatar talks are still in their infancy and not only have they not reduced violence, but amplified violent attacks.

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