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Over 2,000 Afghan refugees arrested in Peshawar

AT Monitoring Desk-KABUL: Over 2,000 unregistered Afghan refugees have been detained by Pakistan police in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Pakistani media reported.

Search operation is still underway to arrest more Afghan refugees who lack legal stay documents, police said Wednesday.

Moreover, Pakistani officials set June 30 as a deadline for Afghans to register themselves.

Pakistan’s behavior toward Afghan refugees changed following recent tension in Torkham crossing between the two countries. After the Torkham skirmishes, where both sides received casualties, Pakistan changed its refugee policy and become hostile toward Afghans living in Peshawar.

Moreover, it said that around 400 Afghan settlers have been deported to Afghanistan forcedly.

Based on officials, three million Afghans are living in Pakistan as refugee, in which 1.5 million of them are don’t carry legal stay documents.

After detention and harassment of Afghan refugees by Pakistani forces, a Pashtun leader Mahamood Khan Achakzai said that he would not allow anyone to harass Afghan refugees in their “own land”.

“If Afghans are harassed in other parts of Pakistan, they should come here to Pakhtunkhwa province, where no one can as them for refugee cards, because it also belongs to them,” Achakzai added.

He also asked on Kabul and Islamabad to exercise extreme caution to resolve Torkham crossing conflict.

However, it seems that the voice of Pashtun leader to stop Afghan harassment has gone to the deaf ears as Afghans still being detained and harassed by Pakistani forces.



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