4,599 Afghan refugees repatriated in last seven months

Slump in volunteer repatriation because of illegally occupied properties by Afghan refugees across Pakistan

​ Our Correspondent October 07, 2019
Afghan refugees are seen at UNHCR’s Voluntary Repatriation Centre in Peshawar. PHOTO: REUTERS

PESHAWAR: The volunteer repatriation of the Afghan refugees faces failures as only 4,599 refugees have been repatriated to their native country in last seven months.

Each year the United Nation High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) announces repatriation of the Afghan refugees through their facilitation centers while the efforts of the repatriation have seemingly fallen short as very few refugees have been repatriated, said a source while talking to The Express Tribune.

Amongst the reasons, for the slump in volunteer repatriation are the properties illegally occupied by Afghan refugees across the country especially Peshawar. They are hoping to acquire citizenship someday, he added.

The progress reports showed that the numbers of volunteer repatriation to Afghanistan has fallen to 60 percent, and in the past eight months of 2019, progress has showed that only 14,017 refugees have been repatriated to their native districts in Afghanistan.

The volunteer repatriation process has seen very little progress due to the upcoming winter. Up to 1.4 million Afghan nationals presently reside in Pakistan and the government has increased the date line in their repatriation.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 7th, 2019.


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