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Afghan, Hazara’s are an ethnic minority originating in Afghanistan. According to the World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples ‘they were once the largest Afghan ethnic group constituting nearly 67% of the total population of the state before the 19th century. More than half were massacred in 1893 when their autonomy was lost as a result of political action. Today they constitute approximately 9% of the Afghan population.”¹
Hazaras have been persecuted for many, many years as a result of their religious beliefs and a difference in ethnicity. They have for generations been sold into slavery, discriminated against, denied services and had their lands pillaged and seized.¹
The government continually tries to propagate that Afghanistan is safe to return to but accounts of people being deported back there speak otherwise.
Cynthia Banham reported in The Advertiser of how an Afghan asylum seeker had his claim rejected under the Howard government was deported back to a Southern Province of Kabul.
“The man, Mohammed Hussain, was thrown down a well by gunmen, believed to be the Taliban. Then in front of onlookers including members of his family, the killers threw a hand grenade down the well and he was decapitated.”²
With the forces of the Taliban and international military presence, Hazara’s face severe persecution and oppression, this is why many of them are forced to flee and why it is unsafe for them to be sent back.
¹Minority Rights Group International, World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples – Afghanistan : Hazaras, 2008. (http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/docid/49749d693d.html [accessed 23 December 2011)
² Cynthia Banham. Beheaded after trying for asylum in Australia in The Cessnock Advertiser 2008. (http://www.cessnockadvertiser.com.au/news/national/national/general/beheaded-after-trying-for-asylum-in-australia/1349266.aspx)
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