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Taking notice of Afghan refugees’ plight: Delegation arrives Islamabad

AT Monitoring Desk-KABUL: In a bid to address the plight of Afghan refugees in Pakistan, a delegation led Sayid Hussain Alimi Balkhi, the Minister of Refugees and Repatriation, arrived in Islamabad on Monday.

The delegation would widely discuss the issue of Afghan refugees with Pakistani officials. The main agenda of their discussions were extending Afghan refugees’ stay in Pakistan, addressing the problem of arbitrary arresting of Afghan refugees, expulsion of the refugees and their harassment by the Pakistani police.

Officials in the Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation (MoRR) said that the minster would request Pakistani officials to release the Afghan refugees who have been jailed in Pakistan.

The delegation would discuss the issues of Afghan refugees with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in Pakistan as part of their official visits.

Earlier, Afghanistan’s Chief Executive, Abdullah Abdullah, said that a delegation would be sent to Pakistan to address the problems of Afghan refugees there.

The delegation arrived Islamabad at time that more than 30,000 Afghan refugees in Pakistan were jailed and were harassed by Pakistani police in past few months.

In the aftermath of the deadly attack of Pakistani Taliban on a school in Peshawar which left more than 100 students dead, the Pakistani police had kick off searching houses of Afghan refugees and pushing them to leave there.

According to International Organization for Migration (IOM), more than 22,000 Afghan refugees were harassed by Pakistani police only in January and were sent back to Afghanistan.

Pakistani media outlets reported that Pakistani police had searched Afghan refugees’ houses in different cities and had pushed them to leave there.

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