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Pakistan not to expel Afghans by force: Janan

30 July, 2012

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KABUL: Pakistan will not expel Afghan refugees from its soil by force, the foreign ministry of Afghanistan has said.

Addressing a press conference in Kabul on Sunday, the spokesman for foreign ministry Janan Musazai said they welcomed the decision reached between the Pakistani officials and United Nations High Commission for Refugees regarding the volunteer return of Afghan refugees to Afghanistan.

"No Afghan refugee will be forcefully expelled from Pakistan. Afghanistan, Pakistan and the UNHCR have reached an agreement in this regard. The Afghan refugees would return to Afghanistan voluntarily. We want repatriation of Afghan refugees from other countries, particularly from Pakistan.

But their at once repatriation may create issues for us," he added.

Five million Afghan refugees had voluntarily returned to Afghanistan over the past 10 years, Musazai said, adding they were striving to pave way for volunteer repatriation of Afghan refugees to their homeland.

Recently some reports said Pakistan would expel Afghan refugees from its soil after 2012. The reports created concerns among Afghan officials and refugees.

The Afghan government has repeatedly said they were incapable to receive millions of Afghan refugees living in foreign countries, particularly in Pakistan and Iran for the last more than 30 years.

The Afghan government is of the view that the repatriation process should be gradual and under the observation of the United States, and that the Afghan refugees repatriate from foreign countries voluntarily.

End.

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