HERAT (Khaama Press): Afghanistan’s Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation on Saturday announced that 1,682 Afghan refugees returned to the country from Iran.
The returnees entered Afghanistan through the ‘Islamqala’ crossing point in western Herat province, and the needy families have been introduced to the United Nations Agency for Refugees for help.
The Afghan refugee authorities have reported that thousands of Afghan citizens have returned from Iran in the recent past. However, it is still not clear whether the returnees were forced to leave Iran, or willingly came back to Afghanistan.
After the Islamic Emirate seized power in August 2021, thousands of Afghans migrated to the neighboring countries including Iran and Pakistan, mostly through Chaman and Torkham crossing points. A large majority of these migrants did not have legal stay documents including visas or stay permits, now facing serious challenges in the host countries.
Furthermore, the Iranian government forcefully extradites those Afghan refugees who fail to provide legal stay documents (visa or refugee card) from UNHCR.
Meanwhile, Afghanistan’s Consulate General in Karachi on Saturday said that 137 Afghan nationals were released and will be extradited to Afghanistan in the coming days.
Since the return of the Taliban to power, more than 250,000 Afghan migrants have entered Pakistan, some legally, others without valid passports and visas, according to The Guardian reports.
Since last summer, Pakistan’s Interior Ministry has taken serious steps to arrest undocumented Afghan nationals and forcefully deport them to Afghanistan. It is believed that more than 600 Afghan refugees have been extradited in three days in January alone, and detentions have increased throughout Pakistan.
The incarceration and forceful deportation of Afghan citizens in the neighboring countries including Iran, and Pakistan continue, as they flee Afghanistan fearing persecution and death threats under the Taliban regime.