Senate rejects HRW report on Khalid as ‘biased, baseless’

Monitoring Desk

KABUL: A number of Meshrano Jirga or Senate members on Sunday criticized the Human Rights Watch (HRW)’s allegations against the acting defense minister Asadullah Khalid as ‘biased’ and ‘baseless’.

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.

In today’s session of the Meshrano Jirga, the senators discussed the HRW allegations. Senator Rahmatullah Achakzai from Kandahar province, described the HRW report as ‘a plot’ against Khalid.

“The plot against Khalid comes after he was warmly welcomed in order he could not improve the country’s security and end the war.”

Amanullah Azimi, another senator, said, “I wonder why this report was published now, Khalid was the governor of Kandahar 10 years ago. The international community should not make plots against someone who is loved by his people and has enough experience and abilities. This report is baseless, politically motivated and biased.”

The senator said the Afghans should be careful and not to be deceived by such reports which had no basis.

Azimi asked the Afghan government to provide a reasonable response to the HRW report so the allegations were not misused.

Meshrano Jirga chairman Fazal Hadi Muslimyar also criticized the report and said, “I as the head and you as members of this house support our security forces and their leadership, if this report is not biased, then why it is published today, why not 10 years ago.”

He said the report was aimed at putting mental pressure on Asadullah Khalid so he was unable to lead the Ministry of Defense. (Pajhwok)