Ashura

Despite security concerns, Afghan observes the day of Ashura

On the Day of Ashura, Afghan government leaders were spotted attending in different ceremonies around the country and sharing their views on the peace talks on Tuesday.

“I will want republic [government] even if I will be alone as Imam Hussain,” President Ashraf Ghani said during a ceremony on Ashura in Kabul.

But Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah who attended another event on Ashura said the enemies of the country are using different ways, but they could not damage unity among Afghans.

“This day is the symbol of unity between Shias and Sunnis in Afghanistan and it shows the unity of the Muslim nation,” Abdullah said.

Mohammad Karim Khalili, head of the High Peace Council, attended the same event with Abdullah, emphasized the need for ensuring peace and stability in the country.

He said that he was “shocked” by the news of a possible meeting betweenPresident Ghani and US President Donald Trump at Camp David.

“We were shocked when issues were made clear. The government authorities, particularly Mr. Ghani, should be responsive in this respect,” Mr. Khalili said.

Despite security concerns, the Ashura ceremony was observed by thousands at the Blue Mosque in Mazar-e-Sharif city in the northern province of Balkh and western province of Herat.

“People were ‘threatened’ not to attend Ashura. This was your love for
Imam Husain to attend this ceremony,” said Abdullah Rafiee, a religious
scholar.

“Those who are trying to create division among the people are not counted as Muslims… Those who are ‘shedding your blood’ have no
relation with Islam,” said Zabihullah Haqjo, the deputy head of Balkh Ulema Council.

“We have been deployed here for the past five days. There were security
threats but we are here to protect them,” said Khalil Ahmad Sarwari,
member of public uprising forces.

“We did not witness even a single incident because of concrete measures
for the safety of Ashura ceremonies,” said Hadid Mahdi, member of Herat
Provincial Council.

Meanwhile, dozens of Afghans in Kabul, Herat, Balkh, Kunduz and other
provinces attended blood donation campaigns to observe Ashura day.

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