A rally was held in Nashville Sunday as the state prepares to resettle at least 300 refugees from Afghanistan in Middle Tennessee.
According to WKRN, dozens of people attended the rally, some of whom are Afghan refugees who previously fled the country due to Taliban violence.
“Banning education for women, taking people’s property away, extortion, kidnapping, outright chopping people’s arms off,” Masood Sidiqyar reportedly said of the Taliban. “These people have hijacked a religion, a religion worshiped by over a billion people and turned it into a weapon.”
Sidiqyar asked for compassion from the people of Tennessee as the refugees are resettled.
“I’ve been in the Nashville community since 1988 and it’s been incredibly supportive over the years and I hope that people have the patience and the compassion that they showed me and other refugees,” Sidiqyar reportedly said.
Another rally-goer, Rashed Fakhruddin, who works at the Islamic Center of Nashville, said he was concerned with the Taliban’s treatment of women.
“The basic rights, such as education, physical and emotional rights of every human being, and especially women, it’s part of the faith contrary to who’s in power,” he reportedly said. “Our faith teaches that every woman is to be physically and emotionally care of and so if any of that’s violated we have to speak out and hold people accountable.”
There is no word on exactly where or when the refugees will be resettled. Many are currently being processed at military bases across the country, and some have already been charged with violent crimes against women.
Gov. Bill Lee (R), who volunteered to continue resettling refugees in Tennessee after former President Donald J. Trump significantly decreased the number of refugee acceptances, recently ignored The Tennessee Star’s questions about the vetting process for the newest group of Afghan refugees.
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Pete D’Abrosca is a contributor at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Follow Pete on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Afghan Refugees Settlement I-12” by Hashoo Foundation USA. CC BY-SA 2.0.