April 9, 2020 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
New York: The Islamic State (ISIL/ISIS) has imposed a 10-day ultimatum for all Sikhs to leave Afghanistan. This comes in the wake of a recent attack on a Gurdwara Sahib in Kabul on March 25, which left 25 Sikhs dead.
The Sikh population living in Afghanistan remains the most targeted, forcing many to flee to other countries to seek refuge. Afghanistan has historically been home to hundreds of thousands of Sikhs for centuries. Today, the Sikh population has dwindled to barely one thousand, made up of less than 300 families, with only few operating Gurdwaras across the country, including Gurdwara Guru Hai Rai in Kabul, the site of the most recent attack.
A US based NGO, United Sikhs, has urged Canada, Germany, United States, India, Australia and other countries to answer the plea of Sikhs living in terror, with entry into these countries via protected asylum.
“For decades Sikhs have been at the forefront and vibrant members of these countries and have contributed richly as citizens. Now we request these very nations that humanitarian intervention is urgently needed to help the Sikh minority undergoing constant and consistent suffering in Afghanistan”, reads a statement by United Sikhs.
“Short sighted and failed policies from the United States and Afghanistan have shaped the current state in Afghanistan for Sikhs today. Now, the United States has a moral obligation along with the United Nations to protect Afghan Sikhs and ensure their civil liberties and freedom from religious persecution”, the statement reads further.
The NGO further said that the countries across the globe have an extraordinary leadership opportunity by lifting immigration restrictions and opening their doors to Sikhs escaping Afghanistan.
“By granting Afghan Sikhs with Special Protected Status, and special entry into other countries via protected asylum; and saving lives in the hundreds. Time is a very real enemy of Sikhs desperate to leave their homeland and historic places of worship. With the 10-day ultimatum imposed by the Islamic State; there is little to zero protection from the horrors Sikhs will endure if they do not find immediate refuge”, the statement reads.
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Related Topics: Attack on Sikh Gurdwara Sahib in Kabul (Afghanistan), Narender Singh Khalsa (Afghanistan), Sikh Diaspora, Sikh Identity, Sikh News Afghanistan, Sikhs in Afghanistan, United States, United States of America