Disabled Afghans urge US to return Afghanistan's assets

Local people wait to get hired at a market in Kabul, Afghanistan, Oct. 28, 2021. (Photo: Xinhua)

JALALABAD, Afghanistan, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) -- Scores of disabled persons staged a protest in Jalalabad, capital of Afghanistan's eastern Nangarhar Province on Tuesday, urging the United States to return Afghan assets.

The protesters described the freeze of Afghanistan's assets in U.S. banks or giving them as compensation to the families of the 9/11 terrorist attacks victims as "unjust", saying that Washington should return the assets to Afghanistan.

The United States, following military defeat and complete withdrawal of forces from Afghanistan in August last year, has frozen nearly 10 billion U.S. dollars assets of Afghanistan's central bank, leading to worsening economic problems and poverty in the war-torn country.

U.S. President Joe Biden, reportedly in a decree issued on Feb. 11, allocated 3.5 billion U.S. dollars of the sum to the families of the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and also diverted 3.5 billion more U.S. dollars to the Afghans as humanitarian aid without consent of the Afghan administration run by the Taliban.

The disabled union's chief Masoud Safi said in his speech during the protest "No Afghan was involved in the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on America and therefore allocating Afghanistan's assets to the families of the terror attacks victims is unfair."

Afghans, by holding similar protests in different cities over the past week, have demanded the release and return of the assets to Afghanistan.