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malcolm chamberlain

musings about the emerging church, mission and contemporary culture...

God is at large, intimately involved in his world in ways that the church is maybe just waking up to!

act now...

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

I don't normally use this blog for petition signing and the like, but when a dire situation arises accompanied by an opportunity to do something simple and potentially effective, I think 'why not?'!

Last Thursday, 23 South Korean aid workers (pictured left), most of them young women, were taken hostage by Taliban fighters in Afghanistan. The Taliban are threatening to execute them later this week, an action that could force aid agencies to pull out of Afghanistan, denying millions of Afghanis the help they need after years of war.

The situation is desperate, but there is a possible hope. The Taliban are all from the 'Pashtun' ethnic group, and observe a strict code called Pashtunwali. This code demands, above all else: "hospitality to all, especially guests and strangers". There are rumours of infighting among the Taliban over these kidnappings, because they clearly violate the code.

A global outcry for the Taliban to follow their own code would certainly be covered by media in Afghanistan and Pakistan, where the Taliban are based, creating massive local pressure on them to free their prisoners. These hostages are living under a 24 hour death sentence and so avaaz.org have arranged a global online petition to try to generate this kind of publicity and pressure. It's simple to sign - only taking a minute of your time - but it could make a huge difference. Go 'here' to sign the petition and try to pass word on to others who may sign. It would be great if you left a comment here too...

see the Guardian's coverage of the crisis 'here'
sign the petition 'here'

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posted by Malcolm Chamberlain, 8:00 PM


Thanks for drawing attention to this Malcolm, I didn't know about the petition. Thanks too for your posts on the troubles in Pakistan - I share your love for the country having spent 2 summers working there.

commented by Anonymous Kate Wharton, 7:28 PM  

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