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Pakistan force Afghan refugees to help in terrorist activities: Activists

KABUL: Criticizing the harsh situation created by Pakistani government for Afghan refugees in Pakistan, particularly in Peshawar the capital city of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and around the province, a number of civil society activists on Sunday alleged that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) forces Afghan refugees, through threatening and arresting them, to help the spy agency in carrying out terrorist activities in Afghanistan.

“The recent information we have collected about Afghan refugees in Pakistan reveal that the Pakistani government is chasing a new policy to carry out terrorist activities in Afghanistan. This policy involves threatening and imprisoning Afghan refugees and through this, pushing them to take part in subversive activities,” claimed Maisam Ihsani, the chairman of the Young Activists Network for Reform and Change (YANRC).

He told newsmen that Pakistan wants to follow a new tactic to create insecurity in Afghanistan. “Pakistani police detain Afghan refugees from streets and everywhere, and then push them to cooperate in insurgent activities in Afghanistan,” he added.

He also said that Afghan refugees are facing harsh situation and are tackling with several challenges, and even they cannot go out of their houses due to restrictions by the Pakistani government.

Terming the restrictions and the cruel situation for Afghan refugees in Pakistan against international conventions, the agreement signed between Kabul, Islamabad and the UNHCR, Ihsani prodded the Afghan government to find a better way out of this challenge through diplomatic channels.

Member of the YANRC, Mujahida Safi, said that Pakistan expelled nearly 3,000 Afghan refugees in past few months, adding that the refugees have resided in eastern Kunar province while facing several problems.

She urged the international community and in particular the United Nations to prevent such movements by Pakistan.

There are at least 1.6 million registered Afghan refugees in Pakistan and more than one million unregistered one.

The YANRC said in a statement that Pakistan has always used Afghan refugees as a tool of its foreign policy to pressurize the Afghan government in reaching its own goals.  The YANRC members said that Kabul has failed to take notice of Afghan refugees’ plight in past 14 years, and now is the time to find a practical solution in this regard. (By Akhtar M. Nikzad)

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