APPG Statement on Sectarian Violence in Afghanistan

The Officers of the UK All-Party Parliamentary Group for International Freedom of Religion or Belief strongly condemn the escalating violence in the city of Jalalabad, Afghanistan, which includes the targeting of Sikh and Hindu communities.

On Wednesday 11 July gunmen attacked an education department office in Jalalabad and held out against security forces for some four hours before the assault ended with at least 10 people killed.

This assault follows an attack on Tuesday 10 July which killed 12 people and one on Sunday 1 July which killed 20. This attack targeted members of Afghanistan’s minority Hindu and Sikh communities, including the only Sikh candidate for parliament, Awtar Singh Khalsa. Islamic State has since claimed responsibility for the strike.

In addition to being targeted by violent extremists, religious minority communities in Afghanistan face significant social and legal persecution.

We urge the Afghan Government to fully investigate these violent incidents to bring the perpetrators to justice. We also urge the Government to do everything in its power to protect the rights of religious and non-religious minorities and to ensure that all its citizens can live their lives free of violence and persecution.





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