Afghan migrants and refugees urge Australians to 'join the call'

To mark one month since the Taliban forcibly took control of Afghanistan, three Australian leaders who were born in Afghanistan have released a video calling on Australians to stand in solidarity with Afghanistan and pressure their national leaders to do more.

Shabnam Safa, chair of the National Refugee-led Advisory and Advocacy Group (NRAAG), says Australia has an “ethical and moral obligation to help the people of Afghanistan.”

Shabnam, who was 15 when her family arrived in Australia as Afghan refugees, says: “This is the biggest catastrophe Afghanistan has faced in recent times that has shaken all of us to our core.”

She says Taliban rule is particularly hard to accept after Afghans lived for 20 years with promises of freedom, democracy, and human rights.

Barat Ali Batoor, a professional freelance photographer from Afghanistan, warns of the threat of massacres of “those who are at risk of being persecuted” in Afghanistan.

“In this situation, our fellow Australians can stand in solidarity with us to raise our voice and amplify it,” he says.

Zaki Haidari is a refugee from Afghanistan’s persecuted Hazara ethnic group who escaped to Australia by boat after being targeted by Taliban to be killed in 2013, at age of 17 years old.

“It’s a dark time for the Afghanistan people,” he says in the video.

“We are asking Australians to please stand with the refugees from Afghanistan.”

The video, released by Christians United for Afghanistan and Micah Australia, ends with a call on Australians to sign a petition urge our national leaders to welcome 20,000 refugees from Afghanistan, protect people from Afghanistan in Australia, reunite refugee families, and provide humanitarian aid.

You can sign the petition here and watch the video here.