People in Afghanistan have blasted government for not having doing anything to curb the human trafficking problem, nor bring the perpetrators to justice.
They said that human traffickers go about their business freely and openly traffick people to Europe.
They claimed that a number of money exchangers are also involved in the business and that they help human traffickers by holding on to money paid to the traffickers by would-be migrants. They said this money serves as a type of guarantee and that when a migrant reaches their destination, the money exchanger hands over the money to the trafficker.
Residents also claim some money exchangers are themselves involved in money laundering.
“[President] Ghani and [Chief Executive Officer] Abdullah has no plan in this regard,” said Ajmal, a resident of Kabul city.
“They are ordinary people. They go with people to money exchangers and write letter [about the deal that they make with people]. If the government has the will, they can tackle the issue with limited resources,” said Ghulam Ali, another Kabul resident.
“Last year I wanted to go to Europe. The human smugglers deceived me by painting a rosy picture of Europe, but when I left I faced many hardships along the way. They [drug traffickers] do not care about people’s lives,” said Assadullah, another resident of Kabul.
The Money Exchangers’ Union however rejected the allegations and said powerful mafia groups are involved in the business.
“These circles are foreign and domestic agents. They are human smugglers who want to create problems for people,” said Amin Jan Khosti, a member of the union.
The Ministry of Defense has also voiced concerns over the issue and has called on people to support them in fighting human trafficking.
“With the support of people we try to launch programs to raise public awareness regarding risks along the way, so that they will not be deceived and on the other hand we want to find their foreign and domestic networks. Police in addition to other duties are also responsible to fight against this phenomenon,” said Sediq Sediqqi, spokesman for the MoI.
More than 180,000 people, with the help of human traffickers, have so far left the country illegally for Europe. However, government has not taken any action against the human traffickers so far.