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Last Updated: Monday, 31 July 2006, 07:05 GMT 08:05 UK
Afghans speak on foreign troops
The presence of foreign forces are a daily reality for people throughout Afghanistan.

While British forces launch offensives against Taleban strongholds in the south, Nato troops patrol the streets of Kabul to maintain order.

Here Afghans from around the country give their verdict on the foreign troops in their midst.

Jamail Haider
Jamail Haider:

Muhammad Ibrahim
Muhammad Ibrahim :

Mariam Chahasray:

Mohamad Masoum
Mohammed Masoud:

Naseer Roshan
Naseer Roshan:

Jahanda Payseri:


Jamali Haider
Jamail Haider is very grateful for the presence of foreign troops
I want to express my thanks to the foreign troops who protected us from the cruelty of the Taleban and al-Qaeda.

They are very nice and kind to us. From the time they captured Bamiyan city, they have provided not just military, but social support.

I have seen the establishment of a base here and they have helped build schools and hospitals.

The people are really very happy with them - their behaviour is very kind.

Before foreign troops came, the Taleban regime showed only cruelty to the Hazara people who live in this area.

I remember one incident when they killed hundreds in one night.

They took away the rights of the Hazara people and pushed us back to the mountains. You can tell Hazaras just by looking at them - we felt they would kill us just like that if they saw us.

But when the foreigners came, everything changed. We can now live freely in Bamiyan. Before, we could not walk easily in the streets, now we have our rights back.


Muhammad Ibrahim
Muhammad Ibrahim says life in the south is unsafe
The south is a dangerous place to live now. I do not feel safe here. We feel we cannot go outside at night.

When the US pulled out from Helmand, the security situation got very much worse.

I get very angry because in the last few months many civilians in this region have been hurt because of the fighting between the insurgents and the foreign forces. Civilians have got caught in the crossfire.

Bombs have been dropped and there is little concern for our lives. We think the troops should send in ground forces, rather than wipe out villages from above.

So, for many reasons, foreign troops are not popular here in the south of the country. Insurgents are also brainwashing people, telling them to fight against the British because they are the enemies.

I know that many villagers, who have close contact with these insurgents, don't like the troops.

They feel the British have come to the south to take revenge for past defeats. But I should say that people had a very poor opinion of the Americans. We prefer the British because they seem more sincere.


Naseer Roshan
Naseer Roshan says military intelligence must get better
I believe that peacekeepers should go to all parts of Afghanistan. That will allow peace to come.

But when the foreign troops bomb, they should gather their intelligence very carefully and then act on it - in a thoughtful way.

All the bombing has alienated a lot of people in those areas affected.

The bizarre thing is that no-one seems to be learning from past mistakes.

How many times have we heard about the bombing of civilians?


Mohamad Masoum
Mohamad Masoum says the Americans should leave Afghanistan
I say that the Americans and all the other foreign troops should leave Afghanistan now.

But then I also worry that if the international forces pull out of Afghanistan, the country could go back to the old war days.

It is certainly in everyone's interest that peace in Afghanistan remains in place.

Because now we have all seen what is possible if Afghanistan goes back to the way life was before the war.


What we want to see here in Afghanistan is peacekeepers go and secure the rural areas of the country rather than just the cities.

It is very important that they make sure it is possible for girls and women, indeed everyone, to be able to study and have the freedom to do what they want to do.

If they can't change anything, then they should go back
There is a lot of talk about freedom and democracy but I would urge people to go to the rural areas and see what has happened.

If they can't change anything, then they should go back because we have not asked them to come here for tourism.

They should get serious about their mission or witness more problems.


I think the foreign troops were useful when the Taleban controlled Afghanistan. They came here and helped bring peace to the Afghan people.

They helped Afghans go to school, they freed us.

But now that the Taleban forces have left, I don't really see how or why it is necessary to keep coalition forces.

Afghans do not like to see foreigners with guns
But yet they say they will keep these forces in Afghanistan for as long as possible. The danger is that if these forces stay in Afghanistan for a long time, the Afghan people will feel as if they are being controlled by foreigners.

Not all Afghans are rich and knowledgeable and so they will really believe that the foreign forces have come here to control the people.

Afghans do not like to see foreigners with guns.

So when the forces do create peace across the country, they must leave. Every day we hear about a few of the coalition forces being killed. If they stay here beyond necessity, they will continue to be killed.

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