Graham Crouch: Hazara's of Afghanistan
Images © Graham Crouch 2013
Local Hazara man Sadiq, a mason and his 6 year old nephew Ali Sina (in image left) at his home in Bamiyan. His brother, Shah Wali - father of Ali Sina - has fled via a people smuggler to Indonesia where he is attempting to get to Australia. Bamiyan is home to the empty Buddhas of Bamiyan niches, two 6th century monumental statues of standing Buddhas carved into the side of a cliff in the Bamyan valley in the Hazarajat region of central Afghanistan. They were destroyed by the Taliban. The valley is home to many Hazara's, who have often made up vast numbers of refugees to Australia, having been persecuted and driven from their homes in both Afghanistan as well as from Quetta in Pakistan where a lot of displaced Hazara fled to during the Taliban years. Bamiyan is home to a lot of Hazara who are Shia muslim and as such are looked down upon by the Sunni Pashto tribes that make up the population majority in Afghanistan.