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Pakistan to register illegal refugees in a month

Pakistan to register illegal refugees in a month

Mar 14, 2015 - 18:35

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Pakistaninfo-icon has promised not to coerce Afghan refugees into repatriation, a cabinet member said on Saturday, a day after returning from Islamabad.

Minister of Refugees and Repatriation Syed Hussein Alami Balkhi told journalists in Kabul the decision was taken at the 25th trilateral meeting in the neighbouring country.

Officials from Afghanistaninfo-icon, Pakistan and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) met last week to discuss the problems of refugees living there.

Balkhi added the registration process for 1.5 million refugees without documents would be set in motion soon. Around 1.6 million Afghan refugees are living in that country legally.

Illegal refugees would be registered in a month’s time and their harassment and forcible repatriation stopped, the minister said, citing commitments from the host country.

“In the trilateral meeting we agreed to register them. Their information then would be provided to the Afghan government based on which we would give them travel permits,” he added.

In his meetings with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and other officials, Balkhi had insisted on the voluntary return of the refugees. Those returning home voluntarily will be provided better settlements.


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