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Returnees facing challenges at home: survey finds

AT News Report

KABUL: The United Nations Human Rights Council said on Wednesday despite an improvement on living condition for returnees in the country; they still face tremendous social, economical and security difficulties.

“In 2018, some 15,699 refugees returned home under the UNHCR’s facilitating voluntary repatriation program, with the majority returning from Pakistan (13,584) followed by smaller numbers from Iran (1,964) and other countries (151),” the survey reads.

The U.N. body conducted a survey which showed that 61 percent of returnee boys and 36 percent returnee girls had access to education in 2018. The figure was respectively 55 and 33 percents in 2017.

The survey findings added that 27 percent of returnees had not access to receiving health services. The figure was 31 percent in 2017.

“After returning home, many of them face a range of challenges including food insecurity and limited access to land, long-term sustainable shelter, and services including healthcare, education, legal assistance and civil documentation,” read the findings by UNHCR. “Livelihoods opportunities that enable returnees to support themselves and their families are increasingly scarce.”

Food security of returnee Afghan refugees has deteriorated over the past year. Incomes have decline among some groups. Some of 56% of the 2017 returnees report earning at least 5,000 Afs the report said.

In November 2018, the UNHCR conducted Orange Door Research and VOTO Afghanistan to use mobile phone surveys to collect real-time data from 2017 and 2018 returnee population.

The findings give UNHCR Afghanistan a detailed view of the range of returnees across the country.  The aid agency is able to analyze this information to determine and track key trends.  

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