KP govt declines extending Afghan refugees' stay
PESHAWAR (Pajhwok): The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government has declined extending the stay of Afghan immigrants in Pakistan’s northwestern province.
KP could no longer bear the economic burden of hosting the Afghan refugees, a spokesman for the provincial government said on Tuesday.
Mushtaq Ghani told journalists here the deadline for Afghan refugees to stay would run out on June 30. The KP government has set the same deadline for Afghan immigrants to get registered.
If the federal government wanted to extend the stay of Afghans, it should establish refugee camps and shift the immigrants from KP to Punjab.
“After June 30, all Afghan refugees will be restricted to their camps and will not be allowed to move freely in the province,” Ghani explained.
Meanwhile, the government-run Associated Press of Pakistan reported each Afghan family comprising seven members would receive a cash grant of about Rs300,000 on repatriation.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has doubled the repatriation grant, according to the news agency.The grant for an individual refugee had been increased from $200 to $400.
Minister of State and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) Abdul Qadir Baloch welcomed the UN refugee’s announcement of doubling the repatriation grant.
The step would help motivate the Afghans to voluntarily return to their homeland and take part in its reconstruction, the minister hoped. He urged the Afghans to seize the opportunity and opt for voluntary return.