US Campaigners Raise Funds for Afghan Blast Survivor

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The explosion at the Qaz educational center in Kabul was so powerful that it lifted 17-year-old Fatima Amiri off the ground and threw her emaciated body several meters away.

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“I didn’t faint,” Amiri told Granthshala by phone from his home in Kabul.

“I fled to a nearby hospital on my own,” Amiri said, describing the September 30 blast that killed 54 people and injured 114, mostly ethnic Hazara students, who were attacked by the Islamic State group in Afghanistan. repeatedly attacked by

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What doesn’t diminish the seriousness of Amiri’s injuries is that she managed to walk. He has lost one eye and parts of his face are still covered in shrapnel.

“I can’t hear in my injured ear, and I can’t eat properly because my jaw hurts so much.”

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Despite the trauma and suffering from his injuries, Amiri last month passed an exam known as the Kankor exam, an annual test for admission to public universities in Afghanistan. He made it to the top 10 among thousands of applicants.

Amiri’s performance in the exam has secured her admission to Kabul University to study computer science, her favorite subject, and has given her hopes of a better future in Afghanistan – a country often described as the worst place for women. is reported in.

The Taliban, which returned to power last August, have banned secondary education only for girls, with no explanation as to why the ban was imposed and when it would be lifted; However, primary and middle schools as well as universities are open to men and women.

Amiri’s ability to graduate from the four-year study program will largely depend on how well he recovers from the injury he sustained in September.

Fatima Amiri is seen in the close-up photo.

fundraising campaign

Doctors have told Amiri that she will only be able to hear in her left ear if she can go abroad for treatment as advanced medical services are not available inside Afghanistan.

She also needed delicate surgery to remove shrapnel from her face, repair her jaw, and restore tissue inside her ear.

Like most Afghans, Amiri’s family lives in poverty and cannot afford to send her out of the country for treatment.

Aid agencies say international sanctions against the Taliban government as well as devastating social, economic and political changes in Afghanistan since the Taliban return to power in 2021 have pushed nearly all Afghans into poverty over the past year Is.

On 9 November, an Afghan couple based in Virginia launched a US$30,000 crowdfunding campaign to fund treatment and support for Amiri. As of November 22, the campaign has received more than $33,000 from hundreds of contributors around the world, according to organizer Farhad Darya.

While the campaigners have raised more money than expected, they still face obstacles in implementing their goals.

FILE – An Afghan Hazara girl (not Fatima Amiri) weeps on a bench she sat on during a suicide bombing attack on a Hazara education center on October 1, 2022 in Kabul, Afghanistan, September 30, 2022.

Sending money to Amiri’s family in Kabul would be extremely complicated due to the international financial sanctions imposed on Afghanistan.

Acquiring passports, visas and flight tickets for Amiri also comes with hurdles as most embassies in Afghanistan are closed and Taliban officials have blocked the issuing of passports.

“We are working tirelessly to bring him to India or Turkey, but Afghanistan does not have diplomatic relations with any country and it is time-consuming and not easy,” Daria told Granthshala.

uncertain future

Under the Taliban, young Amiri, a Hazara, faces dual discrimination because of her gender and ethnicity.

“Women are excluded from public life and their civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights are disregarded,” Richard Bennett, the UN special envoy on the human rights situation in Afghanistan, reported last month.

The ethnic Hazara, a religious minority, have long complained of discrimination and even persecution in Afghanistan.

Women carry placards and chant slogans during a protest they call
Women carry placards and chant slogans during a protest they call “stop the Hazara genocide”, a day after a deadly suicide bombing attack on a teaching center in Kabul, Afghanistan, October 1, 2022.

“I still haven’t lost all my hope for the future,” Amiri said in Dari, one of Afghanistan’s two official languages ​​besides Pashto.

“I have a lot of aspirations to serve my country in the future.”

However, it is unclear what job opportunities will be available to a young Hazara woman following Amiri’s expected graduation from Kabul University in 2027. For now, the ruling Taliban has established a men-only government and has banned women from even going in public. Park and Sports Center.

Taliban officials maintain that their restrictions on women’s rights are based on Islamic laws – a claim that has been debunked by many Muslim scholars inside and outside Afghanistan.

“This too will change,” Amiri said of the current situation for Afghan women.

US Campaigners Raise Funds for Afghan Blast Survivor

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