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Authorities call on Pakistan to end detention of Afghan refugees

AT

Kabul: The chargés d’affaires of Afghanistan’s embassy in Islamabad, Sardar Ahmad Shakib, called on the Pakistani government to stop arresting Afghan citizens in Pakistan, Tolo News reported.

He said that more than 1,000 Afghans are prisoners in Pakistan.

“1,050 Afghan citizens are in Pakistan’s prisons and efforts are underway to release them and we called on the Pakistan government to stop arresting Afghan citizens.”

The relatives of those arrested said their family members are in bad condition in Pakistan’s prisons. An Afghan national said: “It has been three months since the government of Pakistan arrested our family members. We ask the Pakistan government to release them.” “It has been five months since the Pakistani government arrested my 17-year-old brother, and they didn’t release him,” another Afghan national said.

“We ask Pakistan to release Afghan citizens immediately because according to international conventions, no country has the right to arrest refugees,” said Asifa Stanikzai, a refugees’ rights activist.

The Pashtun Protection Movement (PTM) was helping these imprisoned Afghan refugees, with financial and legal support. There is only one female lawyer in Karachi, Advocate Manza Kakar fighting for the rights of Afghan women and children and raising funds for them, reported Peace for Asia.

A few political parties in Sindh have been campaigning to expel Afghan refugees from Sindh for some time now. Under pressure from these political parties, and to strengthen its vote bank, the Sindh government’s actions against the Afghans go against basic human rights and refugee laws.

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