Over 380,045 Registered Afghan Refugees Repatriated

Over 380,045 registered Afghan refugees repatriated

ISLAMABAD, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 17th Nov, 2016 ) : Over 380,045 registered Afghan refugees have been repatriated to Afghanistan through Voluntarily Repatriation Centers (VRC) of United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) from January 1 to November 16, 2016. Spokesperson of UNHCR Muhammad Asif told APP here Thursday, he said that some 306,962 Afghan refugees repatriated from Khyber Pukhtunkhaw, 28,136 from Balochistan, 2,690 from Sindh, 36,325 from Punjab, 5,457 from Islamabad and 475 from Azad Kashmir.

He said that cash grant from US$ 200 to 400 per person has been increased by UNHCR, all refugees are receiving this amount from the Afghanistan border at encashment centre. The UNHCR facilitates the voluntary return of registered Afghan refugees from Pakistan under its facilitated voluntary repatriation programme which is ongoing since 2002. From its start until this date more than 3.9 million Afghan refugees have return from Pakistan, he added.

He said that UNHCR does not have any documented proof or record of how many undocumented Afghans have returned from Pakistan or cross the border on daily basis as border is so porous with many illegal and unofficial crossing points. UNHCR's mandate in Pakistan only covers registered Afghan refugees, with valid Proof of Registration (PoR) cards who stay/reside within the boundaries of the country of asylum. The Proof of Registration card, issued by the Government of Pakistan to registered Afghan refugees is an important protection document, which entitles its holder to stay in Pakistan until December 31, 2016 and it ensures that the refugees have freedom of movement within Pakistan. PoR card is not an international travel document and thus cannot be used as a visa/passport to cross international border between two countries.