Kandahar IDPs say disheartened about peace negotiations


KANDAHAR: Thousands of Internally-displaced People (IDPs) currently living in Kandahar province say they are frustrated with conflicts and are in despair regarding the ongoing peace negotiations.
Displaced from Helmand, Uruzgan and Zabul provinces, the IDPs are living under severe circumstances. 
Hafizullah, head of a displaced family from the Zhari district of Kandahar province who currently live in the provincial capital, said that he was forced by continued violence in their region to shift his family to Kandahar city two and half months ago.
He said they left all their farms and gardens, now living a miserable life of joblessness besides paying 4,000 house rent monthly. 
“We are fed-up with war. We have lost hope for the US-Taliban negotiations because whenever they reach a breakthrough, the war gets intensified,” he said.
Arghandab district of Kandahar, once a tourism and picnic spot for the people of the province, has turned into the frontline of the war. Last week, security officials said that they defused at least 350 landmines in the region and their efforts to discover more bombs were still underway.
Displaced people of the district say they were unable to return to their homes due to bombs planted on routes.
Janan, a resident of Arghandab who is displaced by war to Loya Weyala area of Kandahar, said, “Taliban do not care about our distressed life, and our minor children nor does the government. They even did not alert us about clashes.”
“It was midnight when the war erupted and we left our houses and belongings for our survival, Janan lamented, adding, “the negotiations are all a lie; they do not care about peace. If they did, they would have shown mercy regarding our situation.”
Around 11,000 families from neighboring provinces and districts of Kandahar have been displaced due to violence to Kandahar city in recent months. Only a limited number of these families received some aid from humanitarian organizations while others suffer from severe poverty.
Earlier, the Kandahar deputy police chief assured displaced people of improving security in their regions after an operation, facilitating their return to homes.