News: Members of the PPC and PJST continue building momentum of peace, security within the Uruzgan Province
Story by Staff Sgt. Nazly Confesor
SHAHID-E-HASAS, Afghanistan - The prospects for peace in Afghanistan is gaining momentum as members of the Provincial Peace Committee and the Provincial Joint Secretariat Team continues to spread the message of peace and security throughout Uruzgan province during reintegration shuras.
More than 100 local nationals and tribal leaders met with Afghan civil leaders in Shahid-e-Hasas, Uruzgan province, Afghanistan, March 11, to discuss local grievances and cultivate peace and security within the region.
Four members of the PPC and two members of the Provincial Joint Secretariat Team organized and led the event. The reintegration shura was held as part of the PJST/PPC outreach campaign in line with their three-month outreach plan, which will benefit the entire province and provide feedback of the locals’ grievances to the provincial governor of Uruzgan.
PJST leader Mohammad Nassir said the goal of the three-month outreach plan is to strengthen the relationship between tribal groups by spreading the message of peace.
“With peace, we can solve the problems in Afghanistan,’’ said Nassir.
The event also offered an opportunity for the Afghan National Security Forces to provide support without any International Security Assistance Force reinforcements.
“We had a provincial government peace process guest delegation in order to hear the demands of the people,” said Haji Abdul Khaliq, District Governor of Shahid-e-Hasas.
During the shura, locals and people interested in the program used the opportunity to break their silence on other issues heavy on their minds.
U.S. Air Force Capt. Nicholas Plante, ISAF Joint Command reintegration officer, said tribal issues, water disputes, land disputes transportation, employment, and security were some of the grievances local citizens spoke about at the event.
“The key leaders inform the delegation about their issues, and the delegation promised them that they would convey the message to Gov. Shirzad,” said Khaliq. “The local key leaders also highlighted what they can do to assist the peace process,” he said.
The Afghan Peace and Reintegration Program is a nationwide Afghan program that provides former insurgent fighters with an opportunity to peacefully and permanently rejoin their communities with honor, dignity, and forgiveness.
According to Capt. Plante, 82 former fighters are currently enrolled across the Uruzgan Province. The basis of the program is applied at the local level and the success of the program relies on the persistence and dedication of the local community.
The program has three-phrases: outreach, demobilization and consolidation of Peace/community recovery and requires trust between the community and the candidate. There are checks and balances to validate their eligibility for the program.
The APRP involves the entire community- not just the reintegrees, and it aims to deliver benefits to the community that prepare the citizens of Afghanistan to live in a peaceful and secure environment.
Since 2010, members of the PPC and PJST have been working together with provincial and district governors and community leaders to make sure peace and reintegration efforts are underway in their provinces.
Following the Shadid-e-Hasas shura the PPC chairman reported 60 people were interested in joining the program.
“Getting everyone involved in the peace process is the first step, showing that the Government of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan can work,” said Nassir. “The people appreciated that their voices were being heard and that gave them hope,” he said.
The PJST and PPC will still continue to reach out to the people of Uruzgan.
“I hope the program will be successful- Inshallah [God Willing],” said Nassir.
This work, Members of the PPC and PJST continue building momentum of peace, security within the Uruzgan Province, by SSG Nazly Confesor, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.