Senator Paul Gavan has condemned the disastrous occupation of Afghanistan by US and Western forces at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.
Speaking during an urgent debate on the situation in Afghanistan Senator Gavan declared:
“Call me old fashioned, but I don’t believe it is ok to invade other people’s countries and occupy them for 20 years.
“50,000 civilian lives were lost over the past two decades, and billions of taxpayers’ money has been spent on a disastrous campaign that was doomed to failure. Which is not to say that many private corporations did not benefit handsomely from defence contracts throughout that time.”
“Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney declared that US policy in Afghanistan was a catastrophic failure. He is right of course, but unfortunately this didn’t stop successive Irish governments from supporting the war by offering the use of Shannon Airport to US forces travelling to and from the region.”
Speaking of what needs to happen now Senator Gavan said:
“We must now support the people of Afghanistan with their urgent needs including those who live and stay there as well as those who are now trying to leave the country because they feel their lives are threatened.”
He concluded: “The international community has a huge responsibility to all these citizens and In particular to protect Afghan women and girls whose lives and human rights are posed in extreme peril. International treaties and obligations should now prove their relevance and those who signed and ratified them should now stand for their signatures.”