Thursday, October 23, 2014


After Karzai -- Afghan Election 2014

Abdullah Team Under Fire For Khomeini Tribute

Passions have been inflamed in Afghanistan after a running mate of presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah (right) was photographed commemorating the death of former Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini. (file photo)
Passions have been inflamed in Afghanistan after a running mate of presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah (right) was photographed commemorating the death of former Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini. (file photo)
Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah and his campaign team have come under fire for commemorating the death of Ayatollah Rohullah Khomeini -- the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
 
Abdullah's second vice-presidential running mate, Mohammad Mohaqeq, a former Hazara warlord, was pictured alongside supporters in Kabul paying tribute to the former Iranian supreme leader during the 25th anniversary of his death on June 4.
   
Afghans, many of them deeply suspicious of Iran, have reacted angrily on Twitter.
   
Others described the gathering as "shameful" and criticized Abdullah's team.
 
There were also some who suggested Abdullah's team was inflaming ethnic tensions ahead of a high-stakes runoff on June 14.
 
The commemoration of Khomeini's death every year by Shi'ite leaders and groups in Afghanistan is usually accompanied by protests, both by Shi'a and members of the country's Sunni majority.
 
Many Afghans are mistrustful of Iran and accuse the Islamic republic of meddling in the country's internal affairs and exerting its influence through political parties, media outlets, and Shi'ite religious schools.
 
Afghans also bemoan Iran's past actions in Afghanistan. After the defeat of the Soviet Union in 1989 and the collapse of the subsequent regime in Kabul in the early 1990s, Afghanistan's neighbors -- particularly Iran -- funded, armed, and trained their Afghan proxies to gain regional leverage -- a move that helped fuel the country's descent into civil war.
 
Tehran supported Shi'ite and Persian-speaking groups, including those of Abdullah and Mohaqeq.
 
And some Twitter users have accused the two of still being under Tehran's thumb.
-- Frud Bezhan
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Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Amir from: Kabul
June 06, 2014 04:26
Unfortunately, RFERL and Radio Azadi are very well-know because their distorted and biased news regarding non-Pashtun ethnic groups of Afghanistan. We are about to launch a campaign soon against such biased reporting.

by: Anonymous
June 08, 2014 12:14
Many Afghans seem to forget that Hazaras are Shia. Why not have good relations with the Iranians who share religious affiliations. It's a region where warlords and pogroms against other ethnic and religious minorities all very common.
Sunni extremists in many nations in the Middle East and Central Asia despise Shia. Many insults are common in the net and Sunni dominated societies.
No wonder that the Hazara want good relations with Iran, the only state where Shia are in power despite being numerous in Bahrain, Lebanon, Pakistan, etc. This doesn't mean though that all the policies in Iran are perfect. FAR FROM IT!
YOU WANT TO SURVIVE IN A DANGEROUS ENVIRONMENT BE CAREFUL IN CHOOSING YOUR FRIENDS, BUT MAKE SURE YOU HAVE SOME POWERFUL FRIENDS AT ALL!

by: Jawed from: Kabul
June 08, 2014 14:08
Amina Zia's tweets are the basis of your entire article - and you wish to be taken seriously ? 'This is Kabul, not Tehran'. No it is this is a minor gathering by some Shia clerics in some minor village of Hazarajat. In the pic Amanullah Zadran can been seen, how much of a fan of Khomaini do you think he is ?

by: jojnjo from: jojnjo@gmail.com
June 08, 2014 15:16
And there I was thinking Abdullah x 2 had more sense & would make a good President of Afghanistan. Unfortunately, I was wrong & hope the Afghans feel the same. Khomeini was the worst thing to happen to Iran & the Iranian people know this, & what he left behind most people there would like to see the back of.

Because it affected their basic human rights & is still doing so right up to this very day with the IRGC/Basiji thugs even trying to spoil things for Rouhani by the day, but Rouhani though once one of their circle is more intelligent than they are & wants to move Iran forward out of the mire Khomeini started put foundations down for in the late seventies.

I hope Rouhani for the Iranian people's sakes succeeds in his mission because if he doesn't God Bless the Iranian people & the rest of us. I also hope he lances the boil that is the IRGC, for it needs piercing badly...but then like all diseases it needs a good radical clean-up & to be quarantined for to be successful. Can only pray for this, to happen one day.

About This Live Blog

Afghans went to the polls on June 14 to decide which of two remaining candidates -- Abdullah Abdullah or Ashraf Ghani -- would be their next president. RFE/RL correspondent Frud Bezhan is blogging from Kabul as this historical race nears its conclusion. With contributions by RFE/RL editors.

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