President Biden is facing mounting criticism for seizing $7 billion of Afghanistan’s federal reserves frozen in the United States. Biden is giving half of the money to families of September 11 victims while Afghanistan faces a humanitarian catastrophe. Democracy Now! speak to two of the founders of a new campaign called Unfreeze Afghanistan, a women-led initiative to lift sanctions and other economic restrictions on Afghanistan, and a woman who lost her son in the World Trade Center attack, who says the money should stay in Afghanistan. “The suffering of the Afghan people at the hands of the United States and its allies is reprehensible.
This is adding insult to injury,” says Phyllis Rodriguez, a member of September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, whose son Greg was killed in the World Trade Center attack and who says 9/11 families want “information, not remuneration.” Afghan American activist Masuda Sultan says the continued lack of access to money and basic services in Afghanistan will inspire a new wave of underground terrorism in the country, “endangering the entire world.” Biden’s order is gravely hypocritical, adds Medea Benjamin, critiquing the administration for “putting themselves forward as these great saviors of Afghanistan” for releasing Afghan-owned assets as “aid” while taking no punitive action against Saudi Arabia, whose citizens led the 9/11 attack.
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