tv Sophie Co RT December 6, 2013 9:29am-10:01am EST
one person who definitely doesn't think so. to be born in the afghanistan. plot could be a harder lot for a person as a baby she was left to die in the sun not to have to suffer or her life but she survived and advanced and believes in the future of her homeland fawzia koofi wants more than just to improve the stories of women in afghanistan she wants to be the first woman president in the history of her life. and our guest today if koofi an afghan politician running for president in two thousand and fourteen how is it so great to have you on our show today first of all let me just say that i admire your courage to do what you are doing in afghanistan i'm aware of the situation with women's rights in afghanistan is far from being perfect it's almost a curse to be born a woman there but still these seem to be optimistic about changes to the lives of afghan women what what goes through how exactly have things changed for women in
your country since two thousand and one. it's a pleasure for me to be in your show thank you so much for what you have say. while i think for the woman's life i can see colorful picture like there are some green zones which talks about progress women have had both in terms of politics social life compared to the taliban government or the taliban which was actually a nightmare for women in afghanistan i was living on the situation myself as a woman in kabul i know what does that mean there's a woman and the taliban but comparing to that time. i think a lot has changed especially women participation in politics right now in the parliament of understand we have sixty nine women parliamentarian out of two hundred number of parliament parliamentarians woman can go to school they go to
universities they can participate in the social affairs economy car fares so that's like the green color part of woman's life there is the black side also which is violence against woman kind of structure of discrimination that women are suffering will talk about that was troll process in just a little bit but i want to focus first about your candidacy as a president your first of all country's first female deputy speaker of parliament and you're running for president in two thousand and fourteen and although some things may be different like you're sad it would take a total transformation within afghan society to elect a female president i mean even in the countries where the long running democracies it's rare so realistically how do you rate your chances. i had to son it's very difficult situation. especially for a woman to be in the top leadership position it has been possible in other
neighboring countries of understand to have woman as their leaders understand that the country is hugely military. and guns are in power rather than just people's voice but in the meantime we have to start from somewhere i believe that you know we are putting the cornerstones for future so no matter what the election results would be the but the important thing is that we put the right cornerstone for the future ok but obviously so many questions arise because you are you know the symbol of this like black country that everyone is afraid of and also you have this beautiful woman running for president and obviously everyone is asking who are your main supporters politically does it come mainly from inside or outside. well i believe inside the country because that's what i did mostly the support i need the vote of people. i think of my supporters are not limited to one particular province or particular ethnic society or tribal society
although i come from north certainly in politics every politician has their own constituents and i hope that my basic constituents will support me more but i trust as i said before this transformed part of afghan society which include women young generations elderly people as well. what support me. i was lucky enough to raise my voice and make it be heard by many people around the world . who believe that the promise and need a change of leadership and they support me also. they believe that you know afghanistan cannot continue to be ruled by the same people who have been in government destruction of the country and now they would like to run and be part of the democracy process democracy you know people who believe in democracy should actually be part of the process of democracy is the good thing about it is it gives
a chance for everybody to run for everybody to participate in politics but if you bring people who don't believe in democracy and the power and the position. certainly it doesn't work a democracy will not survive so there are people inside the father son who believe in the but a future for upon a son a future where we don't have to just rely on the foreign aid and the foreign support but be a country where we stand on our own feet there are many people in afghanistan that will still believe in that vision but when you say. it is it mainly women or chasing men will also work for you. i actually have a good experience of the pants the past two elections where not only a woman supported me certainly i got a lot of votes from the female polling station but made also voted for me and i'm hoping that i get the support of both. trust there will be more votes and support
from woman but in the meantime i trust that. the other will have the support of male voters as well because my focus of programs is not just on a woman. it's for the country. you know the president government under president karzai has been praised by many but also criticized for being completely controlled by americans not being independent and after now you yourself you have great friends in the west you're friends with very a lot of powerful people do you think are you worried that within your country your western links could work against you. it's a very difficult question i actually do lie to my people i just think that my main supporters are my people. and i believe any politician who doesn't believe in
his or her people who doesn't rely on the. people or her people will not be successful. i know that we need to have a longer term strategy partnership with our friends both our historical friends but also our strategy friends but in the meantime i know that. if i don't have the support of my people i will not politically survive and i know that if present car that doesn't have the support of his people he will not he will not survive he initially was regarded as a president that. is very much pro west or receive a lot of support by were so countries in particularly the united states but unfortunately we see a shift of politics in his policy recently he kind of changed when we had. the ground council that voted for the approval of the. agreement security agreement with united states but he doesn't sign it so we have
seen a slight shift of policy from him when it comes to to his politics towards western world. but i guess. we will have to keep a balance of politics to work regional countries in the way that we can continue to keep good friendship. with our strategy partners that have almost saved up other some from the hands of extremism of course taliban but let me rephrase the question . only with the support of your people without the support of your strategic partners or the west as you call them could you win the elections only with the support of your people. i think you can do to would like to win should have the support of both the people or also should have the approval or so to see the kind of final love approval of the international community. but we would like to
election to be very much fair and fine in the hands of really want the of wants to decide about their future because that's the basis for democracy so also brings me to another huge topic which is taliban when i think about it i mean i feel like it's inconceivable that taliban would actually let a woman run the country there will they try to kill you twice there was an attempt on your life they will probably do it again because there is no stopping them is it worth the risk. well it's not only you know that as you rightly mentioned it's not only one or twice the taliban actually tries to kill be it's a continue to tread. even just couple of days ago i was i was warned that i need to be careful because there might be. kind of organized attempts. i think you know that. i have grown up during a very critical time of afghanistan history during basically the conflicts the
thirty five years of conflicts. i have had the choice always either to stay in afghanistan or to experience a different experience but for me the best choice have always been to at least contribute to the change in my country i know sometimes it becomes so difficult that i'm like i think twice or three times before i make a decision especially when it's a big decision about the future of politics in my country and my goal in that in a big elections a truck i think twice or three times because i know that that is sort of great especially that i have two daughters and my own family i have a responsibility towards my daughters as well but i guess if you balance my truths or comparing our challenges security challenges comparing to what i want to achieve and what they want to do away my visions for this country are much more heavier.
and greater than the security challenge just so i kind of ignore the challenges and prefer to continue what i do but i take a short break now and when we come back we'll talk to policy a cookie about afghanistan's drug problem and life after the u.s. troops will stay with us. quite often countries rich in natural resources are the poorest africa is a colony it's a colony of the big corporations it's a colony of some its own leaders who are under the thumbs of the big corporations so they have to beg from the world bank's development of social programs goes to
pay back debts country is drowning under the amount of debt that they had and so every year they would borrow money. and they would use that same amount of money to pay back oh that's. all that money really. the wages of debts. the. war is probably the most complex difficult to. answer. to the phenomenon of friendly fire probably extends back to the invention of gunpowder. a bunch of people you know. for their families there are of us people. reading.
this some shoots my brother in the leg not intentional because it because it was night times four in the morning even the best even the best sold. are going to make mistakes this is this whole idea of brotherhood an author and camaraderie in this sense it was in this context that has absolutely no place. i. think. in the final. and the rest i. believe every week.
that we're back with fauzia koofi who is running for president of afghanistan in two thousand and fourteen great to have you back so we're talking about taliban right before the break let me ask you this if you are elected president would you consider sitting down at the negotiating table with the taliban. it's a very. interesting topic for discussion but in the meantime very tricky. as i see it i have lived all my life in kabul including the taliban time and i have experienced a brutal regime as a woman of course but when you when what i was
a politician i have to be flexible to bring peace and security to my country so i will certainly pursue any discussions and negotiations with any group that will result peace in my country including taliban but in the meantime i know that the government of afghanistan has been following the so-called peace process for the past three four years and that is out that they got from this peace process was more assassination more killing of our leaders more violence on a suicide bombing. unless peace results so i think that the current peace process in afghanistan needs to be revised. i think we have to bring more rigid out powers on both and especially those countries that they have actually been supporting terrorism and extremism they have been training them they have been providing with equipment namely in this case pakistan we need to
talk to them because our the president the current present president also say that if pakistan would like to you know establish and support peace process that afghanistan peace will come to afghanistan safe so if our president also the current administration also believes that peace is in the hands of taliban. then i get at the head of pakistan i guess we should talk to pakistan and and involve pakistan in a harnessed peace process but i will certainly not talk with those people who will not change i will not waste my time and the state i will just try to deliver good governance rule. but poverty the creation trying to establish a government which is a comfortable and i think taliban will automatically be marginalized i think it's almost of time and i was so free sources to continue to pursue a process where the results are easy to read the cut into the cut into the. process
of peace which of the current administration of twenty well there is a high probability of taliban resurgence after the u.s. troops withdraw in two thousand and fourteen in its past form not reformed taliban do you want afghan citizens actually want the americans to stay because this is a very controversial topic outside of afghanistan. well you know that a big council which is called loya jirga in afghanistan it's a very traditional means of decision about national issues. decided that the government of afghanistan should go ahead and have the. security agreement with united states partly you know that our history is full of fight for freedom these are values that each and every afghan will fight the last drop of their blood but in the meantime because of the wrong neighborhood we are located especially the two neighbors that we are located both pakistan and also somehow iran we don't have
good experience of their influence in afghanistan they have been we shipping policies in a way that. that it's more of insecurity and insurgent promoting insurgency in afghanistan so therefore i think people in afghanistan would like to continue to have a partnership with a country which is you know in a way a superpower and have a backup of a strong country that's why this group of like two thousand in theirs that came from different parts of afghanistan yesterday they have approved the afghan government to sign this agreement so i think the nation of afghanistan would like to have you know if you compare. now with one thousand nine hundred six or nine hundred ninety seven where our son was in the hands of. people from. pakistan even arabs. i think there is no difference between the current occupation and the occupation then so tom oven when they claim that afghanistan is an acquired
country i think they don't have a valid point and therefore i think many people in abundance of life to continue to have the same situation not to reverse back well you brought up the word occupation because you had too many seem like even though it's a partnership and it's a civil partnership it does seem like a civil occupation to say do you think that your country will ever be completely independent. in your lifetime for example without americans. looking after afghanistan a father son is defined an independent country. it is a country that has its dependency but in the meantime i agree that you know there are foreign troops according to the agreement security agreement we will have the troops for another ten years i am hoping that ten years will be enough time for afghan forces to stand on their defeat and to be able to defend the country is to deceive themselves. financially you know that afghanistan is located in
a very important geographical location that connects central asia to south asia right now this is a location is being used as a when we can assist but i hope that the ten years period of agreement with united states and their troops present well give a chance for afghanistan to change this weakness as a string in terms of the business between central and south asia and afghanistan to be used as a trade point for connecting. money opportunities in this. region so i'm hoping that in ten years time we will be able to have a country which which is standard itself and doesn't have to rely on forty and it's just what can you imagine just for one second that two thousand and fourteen native american troops withdraw i'm just i'm just trying to get a clearer picture of what shape your country is in right now what would happen would your government collapse right away or would it hold on. a litter to sanaa
use there is one scenario which is the negative view and that is that if foreign troops withdraw and afghanistan is once again abandon as it was in one thousand nine hundred two and one thousand nine hundred six when the civil war that the taleban fighting and came to power. the negative so now you would be the taliban come might. but to power because there are many groups in afghanistan that will not like to talk about a brutal regime they will start fighting against taliban and so the civil war will begin once again but there is also the positive side are you the positive scenario is that. we will be having an election in two thousand and fourteen we will have. political trends kind of transition of power before the military exit of the military transition so this political transition will bring. strong committed
accountable government that is acceptable by people of afghanistan. the government will pave the way for a military military transition slowly this military transition will happen without collapsing this situations of afghanistan i am very much hopeful that this occurrence or not you will be a likely possible ok just really quickly to sum it up you know a lot of people in america are actually growing tired of war involvements american involvement in foreign countries has it ever crossed your mind that u.s. may have grown wary of afghanistan and it sees a guy who says a bargain and regrets its involvement in also greatly depends on who's going to be president next because their foreign policy involvement varies and president to president have you ever considered that the just at some point would not want to be in afghanistan period. well you know let me make it clear the united states was not in the sun just to help the people of afghanistan but they came to afghanistan after two thousand and one when the eleventh september attack happened so they
didn't just come to afghanistan to help on people only but they came to other son to make it a safe place where the security interests will not kind of grow from this place to become a wall of the trade for insecurity so therefore americans are not just here because of us but they are here because of a greater. issue which is the world security and their own security. and i hope that this partnership will continue because both nations of afghanistan are united states have been victim of terrorism. they experienced it in one thousand nine hundred one and under threats are continued and we have experienced it before that i hope it doesn't depend on presidents but it basically depends on and becomes part of course strategy for united states to continue to support afghanistan i know that they have invested blood and treasure in afghanistan and we that we also pay the high price for the for being a victim of terrorism and for being for being wrong politics of different countries
during the cold war a lot of big amount of money was paid to different groups in during the cold war without looking how the money was spent and finally the talk about groups would establish as a result of that we were the victim nation because not only that we paid the kind of human cost but also our education and all values were were damaged and basically we had to restructure everything so i think it's. division ship which which is into interest of the both countries in the interest of the both nation and i hope americans will understand that more than there are times where we have one minute left and i want to touch upon one of the most difficult subjects topics for afghanistan which is drug addiction because proportionally right now afghanistan has the largest population addicted to drugs. do you have a plan how to deal with this. what as we are we are
a victim of regional to reason you know that we are also a victim of regional mafia i hope we get a stronger support from the regional countries for their trafficking to support that you know. get rid of the trafficking and have a regional harvest support on this. and. it occasion you know we don't why should we talk why don't we talk about afghanistan fruit which is the best food in the world. which is the best kind of. takes in the world i think we can promote those kind of agricultural things and provide for months with an alternative and see them just poppy i hope that happens when you become president but the question is how is that that united states and afghan government the current government allowed such mass truck production because i know that at some point taliban had dropped it to nothing but now the drug output increased many times during the american presence why what's going on. well it's
a very complicated it's a very complicated matter. but you know it's very much linked to security security if we. started to get worse and insurgency early days since two thousand and nine i guess poppy cultivation also suffered to get more and more especially in the places where there is more to it security there is more poppy grew i think that's a link with insecurity my plan would be if we have a strong government that's a comfortable and a team that is really harnessed. and works hard both in terms of education providing farmers with certainty which is reliable but in terms of frictional cooperation for trafficking i think it's a good once again what product in afghanistan traditionally people of afghanistan have not been cultivating poppy it's a what product when there is no fighting i'm sure people have. well go for the legal way of thinking thank you so much for this wonderful interview will wish you
all the best for sure to become the president of afghanistan will be working for me from over here so all the best to you and your country that's all we had today and sophie shevardnadze join us next time here on sofia. the continuing inconsistent rise of china to be the clearing restricted fly zones or a critical view on the subject of buying u.s. dollar debt in fact it would appear china is tearing a page from washington's playbook to make rules to feed its geopolitical interests . this is the place that
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