Afghan Delegate Speaks to UT Students

KNOXVILLE — The deputy chief of mission in Afghanistan’s Washington D.C. embassy thanked the United States government for its efforts to rid his country of the Taliban in an address Thursday at the University of Tennessee.

Haron Amin, whose responsibilities include facilitating humanitarian relief efforts for the millions of Afghanis displaced by twenty years of war, updated a group of UT students, employees and the public about current conditions in his country.

“We’re very thankful to the international community for having been there for the Afghan people and liberating the country from the tyranny of the Taliban,” Amin said.

“The world has been forthcoming in providing aid to our people, both humanitarian and social, in terms of bringing out a civic society, the rule of law, justice and democracy.”

Amin said he hopes the international community will not forget Afghanistan if war comes to Iraq.

“We believe that people across the globe have the right to self-determination, and we are a confident partner in the campaign against terror,” Amin said. “But we hope the world, and particularly the United States, would not forget its responsibility toward Afghanistan or place us on the ‘back burner’ should a war against Iraq or elsewhere occur.”

Amin has represented Afghan interests in Washington D.C. and at the United Nations. After the Taliban attacks on New York and Washington, he became the principal spokesperson for the northern-based United Front of Afghanistan. He also served on the staff of Ahmad Shah Massoud, the leader of the Northern Alliance, from 1988 to 1996.