Peace reports from Kabul: Ewa Jasiewicz Kabul on a Key meter: Maya Evans Bagram & Guantanamo What do Afghans Think? Kathy Kelly and Anti Fracking Solidarity plus much MORE
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Kabul on a Key Meter
by Ewa Jasiewicz

I’ve been in Kabul a week now, living in the Afghan Youth Peace Volunteer (APV) house on the border of District 3. The area is a mish-mash of wealthy mirror-windowed mansions fronted by surly gun-on-the-lap security guards, crumbling mudhuts, open sewers, children in ragged clothes warming themselves on burning rubbish, a fake McDonalds and Subway with directly lifted logos, and Kabul’s sole waterpark, for men only and 500 Afghanis a dip. One disc of naan bread is 10 Afghanis (around 10p) and the women working on the APV’s duvet-making project get 150 Afghani’s per duvet, a two hour job, and make 3 per day, earning £4.50 per day in total – a relatively decent wage compared to most people in the precarious work sector who earn between $1-5 per day.

Read more: http://vcnvuk.wordpress.com/2014/01/27/kabul-on-a-key-meter/

Also see Ewa's New Internationalist blog: http://newint.org/blog/2014/01/27/welcome-to-afghanistan/
For Whom the Bell Tolls
Afghans ring a bell of remembrance on Martin Luther King Day for the victims of war
by Kathy Kelly
http://vcnvuk.wordpress.com/2014/01/28/for-whom-the-bell-tolls/
This year VCNV UK managed to raise £4,000 for vital aid help to 2 refugee camps in Kabul, helping some of the 300,000 internally displaced persons. Aid camp in the form of flour and oil doled out from the back of a truck- the drops were organized by Guy Smallman and financed by kind individuals (mainly Eileen Blake) and UK peace groups.
Drone News:

US worried that Afghan withdrawal will mean losing their drone bases next to Pakistan: 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/27/world/asia/afghanistan-exit-is-seen-as-peril-to-drone-mission.html

 

Obama has launched 390 drone strikes on Pakistan in the last 5 years, killing 2,400. We know a similar number of strikes have been fired on Afghanistan by the UK but numbers of Afghan deaths are unavailable:
http://www.thebureauinvestigates.com/2014/01/23/more-than-2400-dead-as-obamas-drone-campaign-marks-five-years/

Court of Appeal in London rules not to proceed with a case brought against the UK government by a Pakistani victim of a drone strike as it might result in "condemnation of the US".
http://www.reprieve.org.uk/press/2014_01_20_Noor_Khan_drones_GCHQ/

For all you need to know about drones see: www.dronewars.net
Bagram & Guantanamo: What Afghans Think?
by Ghulamai Hussein & Maya Evans

Guantanamo Prison has now been in operation for 12 years. 155 people are currently being held illegally, mostly without charge or trial. 16 of them are Afghans, many swept up in 2002 when fellow Afghans (perhaps motivated by bounty rewards being doled out by the U.S ) informed on fellow Afghans as being members of Al Qaeda or the Taliban. International solidarity for the “enemy combatants” increased dramatically  when 106 out of 166 prisoners started hunger striking a year ago. Forty-five of them were eventually force fed. During the international week of solidarity 6-13th January, marking12 years of Guantanamo, the Afghan Peace Volunteers took action by pledging to a 3 day fast. Other global actions included an international fast, a sit in at Washington DC history museum to “make Guantanamo history” and a mass Trafalgar Square rally in the UK.

Read more: http://vcnvuk.wordpress.com/2014/01/28/bagram-guantanamo-what-do-afghans-think/

See what happened in the UK: http://londonguantanamocampaign.blogspot.com 
Maya has purchased 20 of these beautiful Afghan kites for our weekend of anti drone ACTION 21-23 March where we are urging everyone to FLY KITES NOT DRONES. The event coincides with Now Roz (Afghan New Year). More details see: 
http://vcnvuk.wordpress.com/2013/12/02/fly-kites-not-drones/
and contact: kitesnotdrones@gmail.com
Afghan Peace Volunteers send a message of solidarity to the Barton Moss anti fracking campaign on Solidairty Sunday (guaranteed to bring a smile to your face)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=olHzC2T1Xew&feature=youtu.be
Thanks to collections taken at talks given by Mary Dobbing, Susan Clarkson and Beth Tichborne VCNV UK were able to donate £3,000 to the Afghan Peace Volunteers grassroots duvet project initiative which provides work for poor women as well as aid (in the form of duvets) to the neediest of Kabul. Thanks to all the UK peace and Quaker groups who chipped in.

Follow the thriving pop indy music scene of Kabul which includes bands such as Kabul Kabooz and Panjshir Panache (above) at our Facebook: "Voices for Creavite Non Violence UK" photos of activities posted daily

VCNV UK are available for talks whenever and where ever,
CONTACT us now: kitesnotdrones@gmail.com
See all our reports from Kabul: www.wordpress.vcnvuk.org







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