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The brave and historical speech of Malalai Joya in the LJ

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Uploaded on Jul 2, 2007

Dec.17, 2003, Loya Jirga in Kabul

When her time came to make her 3-minute statement, she tugged her black headscarf over her hair, stepped up to the microphone, and with emotional electricity made the speech that would alter her life.

After she spoke, there was a moment of stunned silence. Then there was an uproar. Male mujahideen, some who literally had guns at their feet, rushed towards her, shouting. She was brought under the protection of UN security forces.

In a nation where few dare to say the word "warlord" aloud, Joya had spoken fiercely against a proposal to appoint high clergy members and fundamentalist leaders to guide planning groups. She objected that several of those religious leaders were war criminals who should be tried for their actions—not national heroes to influence the new government.

Despite the commands of Assembly Chairman, Joya refused to apologize.

Today, as a result of her legendary actions, Malalai Joya has become popular hero in Afghanistan. She speaks at rallies where thousands of people carry her photo high.

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