Members of People’s Peace Movement said they were insulted and threatened by the Taliban in Baghlan province when they wanted to pass on the message of peace to the group during their long journey to the northern Balkh province.
The group was in Baghlan this week and travelled through areas under control of the Taliban. The peace movement arrived in Kunduz province on Friday.
The activists said they arrived in Dand-e-Ghori area on the outskirts of Pul-e-Khumri City, the center of Baghlan, on Thursday and went to areas under Taliban control but they were not treated well.
“We were chanting peace slogans and were chanting that stop war and we want peace. Around 20 Taliban members came and threatened, humiliated and insulted us,” said Bismillah Watandost, member of the movement.
The peace activists started their barefoot walking journey to Balkh on August 10. They met with people in Kunduz, the activists said. They will return to Baghlan from where will they will continue their journey to Balkh.
The peace activists were warmly welcomed by Kunduz residents.
“We are in Kunduz and we received a warm welcome from the Kunduz people,” said Amin Wardak, member People’s Peace Movement.
“We call on the people to stand with us for peace,” said Padshah Khan Mawladad, member of the movement.
Hekmatullah, the youngest member of the group, who joined the activists in Kabul, said his biggest hope is a lasting peace in the country.
“Join with us to help bring peace so that we can live happily,” said Hekmatullah.
The activists found a new friend in Kabul, a dog, named Saaran, the watcher. They picked the name for him during this journey. Saaran is more friendly with Hekmatullah, the youngest member of the movement, the activists said.
“Saaran bites no one, because he wants peace,” said Zmarai Zaland, a peace activist.
The People’s Peace Movement which originally was known as Helmand Peace Convoy had walked from southern Helmand province to Kabul following an attack in Lashkargah city in April.
The activists arrived walking to Kabul from Helmand after 38 days. In Kabul they established sit-in protests outside of a number of political missions that according to them are involved in Afghan war.
Then, on August 10, they started their journey to Balkh province to pass on the message of peace to people in the north of war-ravaged Afghanistan.