Justice for Yama Siawash & all Victims!

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On the 7th of November 2020, a mother watched as her son was tragically killed in front of their family home. Moments later, a bereaved father collected the pieces of his son’s lifeless body from the street. His name was Yama Siawash. He was a journalist. A son. A brother. A friend. A glimpse of hope for the broken people of his country.
 
Siawash had recently commenced work as an advisor at Da Afghanistan Bank and had been assigned a car for commute. At approximately 7:45am on the 7th of November 2020, upon embarking the car, the vehicle exploded in front of Siawash’s home and claimed the lives of Siawash, his colleague Ahmadullah Anas and their driver, Mohammad Amin. As depicted in the footage recorded by neighbours, Siawash’s father and brothers can be seen collecting pieces of their son’s body; a harrowing sight that no family should bear. Adding on to the tragedy, there was no police in sight. No ambulance either. Unfortunately, for the Siawash family, this was only the beginning of an arduous plea for justice.
 
Thousands including renowned figures condemned the attack and devoted poems, songs and other pieces of prose. Many even declared the sentiment, “I am Yama Siawash” in order to remind the perpetrators that his legacy will forever live on.  Furthermore, given the circumstances of this horrific attack, one would expect the government to issue a transparent investigation. Yet, more than two months on, the government and Da Afghanistan Bank have not launched any form of investigation and have even denied access to the GPS data and security footage. It is this very indifference and attempt to conceal the evidence which suggests that this was an organised crime.
 
Equally disturbing, a further 7 journalists and activists were assassinated in less than two months following the attack on Yama Siawash. These targeted killings have incited fear within the hearts of Afghans globally and raised serious questions and concerns about the government’s utter disregard. These killings have not only deprived Afghanistan of young, bright and devoted journalists, but have also left hundreds of thousands of Afghans in a state of despair and anxiety.
 
What is this petition for?
Every human has the right to a fair and just trial. By launching an independent investigation, we will be conveying a strong message that those who commit such atrocities will be brought to account. Many within Afghanistan are desperate to speak out against this injustice and advocate for a just trial for Yama Siawash. Sadly, the fear of being targeted renders them helpless. They and the Siawash family are relying on you. Your voice. Your signature. Your efforts. Hand in hand, we CAN raise our voices so that the world hears our cries. For Yama Siawash. For his family. For Afghanistan.
 
The case of George Floyd, an African American who was killed by a police officer is a prime example. For years the African American community suffered discrimination. The killing of Floyd, however, sparked global outrage. Thousands from across the globe collectively raised their voices and advocated for justice. A trial was held and the perpetrators were prosecuted; an outcome that would have otherwise been impossible to achieve.
 
Remember, “Silence in the face of injustice is complicity with the oppressor”.
 
Our mission is simple:
-       Raise global awareness about the brutal killing of Yama Siawash
-       As Afghan officials have not yet broken their silence, escalate the case of Yama Siawash at an international level
-       Launch an independent and transparent investigation to identify and prosecute the perpetrators and their counterparts
-       Honour the life of Yama Siawash and ensure that justice is granted
 
Who was Yama Siawash?
Yama Siawash was born in Kapisa, Afghanistan in 1984. He was a prominent journalist who worked with TOLO news in 2010 to 2015. He anchored the most watched current affairs program, Farahkhabar, and utilised this platform as a means of challenging politicians and government officials. He also sought to raise awareness about the dire living conditions of Afghan civilians namely orphans and victims of crime. Importantly, he empowered Afghan youths across the globe and was portrayed as a symbol of hope, an advocate for freedom of expression and justice, and a voice for the voiceless people of Afghanistan. He was not only a renowned journalist, but also a writer, a poet and a calligrapher who had recently graduated with a Master of Political Science from Noida International University in India in 2019. Siawash had many dreams and aspirations for a better Afghanistan, a country torn by decades of war and oppression. He deserved global recognition. Instead, pieces of his lifeless body laid in a pool of blood on the cold streets of Kabul, Afghanistan by those who sought to silence him forever.