We are a group of progressive Afghan and Iranian youth who have come together to build a network of organized progressive youth in our communities across Ontario. The initial task we have set for ourselves is the coordination of our political activities and the development of a progressive voice in the community.
In building this organization, we decided upon basic points of unity that would unite our work in moving forward:
- An all-out opposition to the Islamic Republic as a dictatorship ruling over Iran. Furthermore, we are firmly opposed to any type of foreign imperialism in Iran, both in the form of military aggression and economic destabilization.
- We also express a fierce opposition to the imperialist occupation of Afghanistan by NATO and UN forces, and as an organization based in Canada, we hope to play a particular role in challenging Canadian imperialism. While we support the resistance of Afghans, we make our opposition to the reactionary forces of political Islam clear.
- We refuse to decide between foreign imperialism and reactionary Islamic forces back home, rather, we actively support the progressive movements in our countries.
- We are determined to take up the issues that affect our Diasporic communities, as well as those of the broader working class people of Canada.
In addition to providing solidarity to movements in Iran and Afghanistan, our intention is to also play a more active role in working class and progressive struggles in Canada. We hope to integrate our work with the struggles of workers, students, women, immigrants and youth in Ontario, and to promote these political struggles among our Afghan and Iranian community.
To raise awareness about the political work we engage in, and to promote the movements we support, we are publishing a progressive and grassroots paper called “Nedaye Mardom”. The articles in the paper will be available in both English and Farsi at this time, and in due course will also be available in Pashto. With this paper we hope to reach the wider Afghan and Iranian community in Ontario and attract people of all related ethnic and linguistic backgrounds to involve themselves and take interest in progressive political work and ideology.
One of the first fronts of our political activity must be in engaging the racist ideology that exists among some Iranians towards our Afghan sisters and brothers. We, Afghan and Iranian youth, make a clear statement that we will not tolerate any discrimination against Afghans.
Our organization hopes to help build the theoretical knowledge and practical methodologi that will allow activists within our network to further the struggles of the multiracial working class in Canada. As much as youth are an energetic and enthusiastic section of the population, we are also convinced that beyond just determined political work, it is necessary to engage in education. Developing a political education program for our membership is among our goals.
We call on all Afghan and Iranian youth to get active and organized within the youth network, and to become active in their communities, workplaces and schools. The Afghan-Iranian Youth Network and our publication, “Nedaye Mardom”, are grassroots people’s initiatives. We need your involvement to continue to grow and to build a movement that can fight for a better society.