MPs: Human Rights Watch report on Khalid a conspiracy

Monitoring Desk

KABUL: A number of Wolesi Jirga or lower house members on Monday criticized the Human Rights Watch’s allegations against the acting defense minister Asadullah Khalid as ‘biased’ and ‘baseless’. The lawmakers termed the report a political conspiracy against Khalid and claimed it was hitched on the demand of regional intelligence agencies.

A recent HRW report said ‘credible evidence of serious human rights abuses and war crimes linked to Khalid have followed him throughout his government career.

An official internal Canadian document described the allegations of human rights abuses attributable to Khalid as “numerous and consistent,” the watchdog said in a statement on Saturday.

Canadian diplomat Richard Colvin testified to a Canadian parliamentary commission in 2009 that Khalid perpetrated enforced disappearances and held people in private prisons.

Syed Mohammad Akhunzada, a lawmaker from Kandahar province, said: “We don’t know why the HRW is behind Mujahideen and Muslims. This report had been published following the demand of regional intelligence networks in order to prevent Khalid, who is an anti-Pakistani personality, to discharge duty.”

Lawmaker Obaidullah Barakza, said individual who is patriotic and sincere to the national interest of Afghanistan is accused of violations and human rights abuse.

He also termed the report supported by intelligence agencies and demanded support for Khalid.

Abdul Qader Qalatwal, a lawmaker from Zabul province said: “Where was the human rights watchdog when a suicide attack happened on Khalid. He changed the defence position of security forces to attacking position and the global human rights watchdog accused him of violations and abused. The report in this juncture of time was an attempt to weaken the security forces.”

Speaker Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi condemned the report of the HRW and termed it a conspiracy against the acting defence minister.

He reiterated his support from security forces and their leadership and added the report was supported by the regional intelligence agencies in order to change the offensive approach of security forces. (Pajhwok)