Afghan refugees seek legal recognition

They advocate for Afghan individuals right to engage in business activities based on their PoRs

Our Correspondent October 13, 2023
Latest UN figures show some 1.3 million Afghans are registered refugees in Pakistan. PHOTO: ANADOLU AGENCY


The Afghan Refugees Shura has put forth a demand to the Pakistani government, urging the registration of undocumented Afghan nationals residing in the country.

They advocate for granting these individuals the right to engage in business activities based on their Proof of Registration cards (PoR).

During a press conference at the Peshawar Press Club, Shura leaders emphasized the importance of allowing Afghan nationals to conduct businesses, own motor vehicles, and purchase properties in Pakistan using their PoR cards.

They stressed that Afghan refugees have peacefully coexisted with the Pakistani population for the past 40 years and have not faced mistreatment during this period.

The Shura leaders expressed their willingness to cooperate with the government’s crackdown on illegal Afghan residents and requested the registration of all undocumented refugees.

They noted that the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has also shown its support for the registration of undocumented refugees.

Furthermore, the Shura leaders called for the removal of expiry dates on the Afghan Citizen Card (ACC), simplification of the registration process, and the registration of entire families collectively.

They also urged the UNHCR to provide assistance to all Afghan refugees, both documented and undocumented, and advocated for the reinstatement of cards that had been canceled in the past.

Additionally, they called on the government to permit business activities, property ownership, and motor vehicle purchases based on registration cards.

The Shura leaders also highlighted the need for the Afghan government to facilitate the resettlement process for Afghan families returning from Pakistan, as these families have been left to navigate the challenges of a war-torn country on their own.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 13th, 2023.


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