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Photo: Steve Eason

Photo: Steve Eason / Flickr / CC BY-NC 2.0, license linked at bottom of article

Protesters were joined by anti-war MPs ahead of the parliamentary debate on Afghanistan in calling for an end to imperialist wars, reports Lucy Nichols

On Wednesday morning several MPs joined a Stop the War protest outside parliament calling for an end to foreign wars, and for the UK to open its borders to Afghan refugees.

Jeremy Corbyn, Richard Burgon, Zarah Sultana, Belle Ribeiro-Addy and John McDonnell assembled in Parliament Square and spoke about the need for an end to British interventionism in foreign countries and argued that the British government must do more to accept Afghans fleeing the Taliban, especially since it is largely the UK and US that are responsible for this crisis in the first place.

The protest then moved on to anti-war chants before dispersing, as the MPs entered the House of Commons to join the Parliamentary debate on Afghanistan.

The crisis in Afghanistan is truly dire, and the speeches of the MPs and activists present reflected this. This is only the first in several protests taking place around the UK in the next couple of weeks, with a demonstration planned in Glasgow tonight, and another in Manchester on 28 August, with more likely to come.

Regardless of the steps the UK takes next in Afghanistan, it is clear that another refugee crisis is looming, and the current disaster in the central Asian country will worsen.

The crisis we are witnessing in Afghanistan is not a victory, but a vindication for the anti-war movement, an abject failure of the British imperial project and an overwhelming tragedy for the many thousands of Afghans who have suffered as a result of 20 years of war and its consequences.

It is therefore up to the anti-war movement to continue to campaign for justice, by pushing the government into keeping our military out of Afghanistan and anywhere else for that matter, and to accept refugees.

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