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sabato, Luglio 20, 2024

Afghanistan: Catholic and Protestant communities call for humanitarian corridors

ROME, AUGUST 17 – The tragic images coming from Kabul only increase disappointment and despair, as well as the need for prompt intervention by the international community.

In light of this, the Catholic Ngo Community of Sant’Egidio joined the Federation of Protestant Churches in Italy and the Waldesian Church to request the urgent activation of humanitarian corridors from Afghanistan. Being engaged for over six years in the protection of civilian populations affected by armed conflicts in Lybia and Lebanon, Catholic and Protestant communities offered their support and experience for the protection of refugees coming from the Afghan territory.

“We are willing to carry out a similar project in favour of Afghan refugees, and ready to cooperate with institutions, local administrations and other expressions of civil society keen to share this urgent humanitarian project”, said in a joint statement Marco Impagliazzo, President of the community of Sant’Egidio, Luca M. Negro, President of the Federation of Evangelical Churces in Italy, and Alessandro Trotta, Moderator of the Wladesian Table. 

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees estimates that, since the beginning of the year, 400,000 civilians were forced to leave their homes in Afghanistan, of which about 80% women and children. In addition, 2.9 million displaced persons were present on the Afghan territory already before 2020. These numbers contribute to the dramatic domestic situation, and make the protection of Afghan refugees in foreign countries even more necessary. For this reason, in addition to offering their support, the Catholic and Protestant communities have loudly called for a coherent and common response from States. In particular, European countries have been pressured to stop forced repatriations and the re-examination of rejected asylum applications.

The need to protect human rights and founding values of the Western society, such as democracy, freedom of expression and education, has been called for by the religious communities, but it is challenged by the political polarization that the issue of migration has taken on in Europe. Mindful of the 2015 migration crisis, some countries such as Austria reiterated a hard line on asylum rights, while Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, Belgium and Greece changed their initial position following the worsening of the Afghan crisis. In Italy, the Interior Minister Lamorgese declared that the country is open to welcome the great migratory flows of the coming months, while stressing the need for close cooperation between institutions involved in the process in order to avoid the threat of terrorism. (@giorgiodelgallo) 

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Il giornale Italiano delle Nazioni Unite. Ha due redazioni, una a New York, l’altra a Roma.

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