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3m blank Afghan passports reportedly in a Lithuanian warehouse


Kabul: Foreign Policy wrote in a report on Sunday that three million blank Afghan passports are kept in a warehouse somewhere in Lithuania.

According to this report, the previous Afghan government signed a contract with Garsu Pasaulis, a printing firm in Lithuania, to produce them, but this company refused to deliver passports to Afghan embassies.

The Foreign Policy reported that valid Afghan passports are currently being sold in the black market in Iran, Pakistan and Central Asian countries for up to $1,500.

The lack of passports has complicated life for Afghan refugees. In many countries, citizenship and asylum procedures require identification documents, while traveling is impossible without one.

According to the Foreign Policy report, Afghanistan’s ambassadors have approached the European Union and the United States for help. Ambassadors involved or with knowledge of the talks claim that the U.S. State Department wants most of the passports delivered to Kabul, with the promise that some will be transferred to the Afghan embassies while most will go to Afghans on evacuation lists.

On February 10, one of the Afghan ambassadors claimed that there were rumors that 300,000 passports had arrived in Kabul.

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