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International Migrants Day: Karzai urges youth to pursue dreams in Afghanistan

Extremism is one of the main reasons behind illegal immigration: Mohaqiq

By Farhad Naibkhel-KABUL: Ex-president Hamid Karzai on Monday called on Afghan youth to stay in Afghan and build their country.

Talking on the occasion of International Migrants’ Day, Hamid Karzai termed illegal immigration of youth to European countries as a national issue. Karzai told youth that they can achieve a prosperous future only in Afghanistan. “You cannot achieve your goals by leaving your country,” he said. He added that ongoing problems in Afghanistan are not permanent. Karzai said that those who are willing to go to Europe for work should instead work for development of their home country.

“There are better work opportunities inside the country. You are owners of this country, so it’s your duty to work for its development,” he added.

He termed unity as key to ever lasting peace and stability in Afghanistan. He said that it’s futile to expect foreigners to bring peace and security to Afghanistan. “It is our duty to bring peace and tranquility to our country,” Karzai stressed.

Hamid Karzai termed recent remarks of Pakistan’s Water and Power Minister Khawaja Asif as insult to the Taliban and Afghanistan.

Khwaja Asif recently told BBC that Pakistan will use its influence on the Taliban to ensure security of Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline project.

Karzai said that the remarks mean that Taliban are controlled by Pakistan and the areas controlled by the militant group are under influence of Islamabad.

He called on the Taliban militants to renounce violence and work for development of their country.

The Second Deputy of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Muhammad Mohaqiq, said that extremism was forcing youth to leave their country and seek immigration in foreign countries.

He said that extremism was not an Afghan issue, but engineered and introduced by foreigners. He added that extremism and militancy was imposed on Afghans.  Mohaqiq called on the international community to support Afghanistan in fight against militancy and extremism.

He urged European countries not to mistreat Afghan immigrants.

The Minister of Refugees and Repatriation, Sayed Alimi Balkhi, said that the ministry is working with ambassadors of different countries in Afghanistan to solve the immigration crises.

He said that the ministry had also talked with Pakistan and Iran to extend stay of Afghan refugees. “We have also urged the countries to issue documents to undocumented refugees,” he added.

Head of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Afghanistan Richard Danziger said that there are more than 5 million Afghans immigrants across the world, but only 150,000 are under more focus.

He said that it was difficult to divide Afghan immigrants in different categories of asylum seekers, economic immigrants etc.

He added that at least 1490 underage children reached Sweden in the first week of October. He said that most of the children had left their country without seeking permission of their family.

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