Afghans trend #SanctionPakistan to express anger over their neighbor’s self-serving support to Taliban

Both Afghan government and citizens have blamed Pakistan for the present crisis in their country, given the latter’s continued support for the dreaded Taliban. Though Pakistan has officially denied the allegations, its action on ground in Afghanistan especially the border areas gives away the game. Afghan have reported from many cities how the Pakistan sponsored elements have infiltrated and aiding Taliban and also working on its behalf.

While the Pak-supported Taliban continues to gain several areas in Afghanistan, thousands of citizens used the hashtag #SanctionPakistan to show their anger and disapproval of Pakistan’s support to Taliabn which has again put their country amid a civil war. The antipathy many Afghans hold for Pakistan was very much evident in their tweets.

Though the use of the hashtag #SanctionPakistan was made last week, the trend caught up on Monday and has been used over 850,000 times by Thursday morning. Data shows that nearly 40% of the tweets originated in Afghanistan.

Habib Shafaq (@HabibShafaq), Counter Terrorism Fellow at National Defense University and Former Advisor at Office of the National Security Council  of Afghanistan tweeted “The campaign of #SanctionPakistan will continue until Pakistan stop its terrorist activities in Afghanistan”.

Afghan  journalist Habib Khan Totakhil used the hashtag to show his anger against Pakistan. “If you are Afghan or a friend of Afghanistan, speak up,” he tweeted on Monday, when #SanctionPakistan first began gaining widespread use. “If you support peace and want to end the suffering of Afghans, keep saying #SanctionPakistan until Pakistan is sanctioned”, he tweeted again on Thursday.

Afghan Youth Representative at UN 2020 Shkula Zadran (@ShkulaZadran) tweeted “#SanctionPakistan is actually advocating for peace and stability in the region and world. If Pakistan keeps supporting #Terrorists, region will change into a hotbed of extremism. World will soon witness many other horrendous incidents such as 9/11. So, don’t be silent, join us!”

Afghan rights activist Wazhma Frogh tweeted “Pakistani state [has] chosen less than 100k Taliban militants over 35 million Afghan population – today in every Afghan home [Pakistan] has an enemy, is this worth it?”.

Daud Junbish, a prominent journalist, accused Pakistan of “supporting and directing terrorism”. “The existence of Pakistan depends on supporting and directing terrorism. Unless and until this issue is dealt with, the world will never be safe for anyone. #SanctionPakistan,” he tweeted.

Zafar SaadatFlag (@ZafarSaadat) tweeted that while Pak pleads for an international settlement, it quietly backs the Taliban on the ground. “
We are killed, displaced, the world knows, but doesn’t take any action against Pak. we suspect that the whole world is involved in this proxy war”, he tweeted.

Another user from Afghanistan Ali Ahmad Ahmadzai wrote: One day Allah will listen to screaming of this little kid and HE will destroy Pakistan and Taliban #SanctionPakistan

Abdullah Hood (@hood_safi) tweeted a caricature of children being killed in the war and tweeted “Our demand is to stop the brutal killing of our children, the people of the world should stand with me #SanctionPakistan”.

Edris Shafeizadah (@MEdrisSh) in his tweet narrated the way orders are given and actions directed by Pakistan to serve its own interests.

Perturbed by the trend, Pakistan issued a statement denying the charges and instead blamed India. Indian and Afghan social media accounts are involved in anti-Pakistan propaganda, said NSA Moeed Yusuf in a press conference. He rued that attempts are being made to put blame on Pakistan over the ‘mistakes’ of the past 20 years in Afghanistan.

Thousands of tweets were aimed at world bodies like the UN, NATO and major powers pleading them to act against Pakistan and urge it to stop support for the Taliban which is gaining ground each day.
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