Thousands of Afghans, particularly those that remained connected to overseas forces, are dashing to go away Afghanistan following the Taliban takeover after a 20-year bloody battle.
Last month’s grim scenes aired reside on nationwide and worldwide broadcasters displaying Afghans making determined makes an attempt to even climb aboard the wings of navy planes at Kabul airport left viewers speechless.
Fearing revenge from the Taliban, tons of of them have already crossed into northwest and southwest Pakistan, which already hosts nearly three million Afghan refugees in whole.
But there are lots of who plan to return to their homeland following what they describe because the “end of foreign occupation”.
Zahir Pashtun, who was born on the Saranan refugee camp situated some 90 kilometers (56 miles) from the Chaman-Spin Boldak border – one of many two key crossings between the 2 neighbors – is considered one of them.
Hailing from the Sari Pul province in northern Afghanistan, Pashtun, 33, visited his homeland solely as soon as in 1998 throughout the first Taliban authorities.
“My family had decided to return to Afghanistan, and our visit was part of that plan. However, the US invasion of Afghanistan and subsequent seizure of our family and tribal lands by the Northern Alliance people fizzled out our plans,” stated Pashtun, who belongs to the Pashtun Ishaqzai tribe, which has a large presence in Sari Pul.
Currently serving because the caretaker of the Saranan refugee camp, Pashtun hopes the Taliban will assist him reclaim the seized property.
“The mafia people have fled after the Taliban takeover, but lands are still not in our (tribe’s) possession. I have written to the Taliban to help us get back our lands and return to our homeland,” he stated.
“I am waiting for their reply. If the reply is positive, our whole tribe will return to Afghanistan,” he stated.
Saranan is home to 50,000 refugees from three provinces of northern Afghanistan — Sari Pul, Jawzjan, and Faryab — and the vast majority of them are Ishaqzai.
It is likely one of the 54 operational camps in Pakistan which have supplied refuge for over 1 million Afghans.
There are round 2.eight million documented and undocumented Afghan refugees living in Pakistan, making it the second-largest refugee inhabitants on the planet after the Syrians in Turkey.
Only round half of the refugees are registered, with the remainder living with out paperwork, principally in northeastern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and southwestern Balochistan provinces which border war-infested Afghanistan.
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), greater than four million refugees have been repatriated to Afghanistan since 2002, however many returned to Pakistan resulting from ongoing violence, unemployment and a scarcity of schooling and medical services.
News from Afghanistan ‘encouraging’
Mohammad Agha, who got here to Pakistan from Jawzjan, northern Afghanistan, as a toddler throughout the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan within the 1980s, says information coming from the war-ravaged nation are “encouraging”.
“News from Afghanistan, particularly the northern region, are encouraging. The foreign invaders and their local helpers have fled, and things are improving gradually,” Agha, donned in a darkish gray shalwar kameez (unfastened shirt and trouser) and sporting a standard black turban, instructed Anadolu Agency.
He, nonetheless, stated he would wait till issues “completely” settle, primarily regulation and order.
“We do not have any economic issues back home. In fact, we have more opportunities there as we have our own lands to cultivate. We only want peace. If peace is fully restored, we will not wait to return to our homeland,” he added.
Echoing Agha’s views, Malik Nauroz Khan from the northern Faryab province stated his household additionally desires to return.
“Pakistan is our second home. We are grateful to the federal government and folks of Pakistan for internet hosting us for many years,” he stated.
“I feel the time has come when we should return to our homeland.””But a refugee is a refugee. There is no alternative to your homeland if your life is safe there,” he instructed Anadolu Agency.
Majority nonetheless don’t need to return
Pashtun, who additionally runs a non-governmental welfare organisation for refugees, acknowledged that almost all of refugees nonetheless don’t need to return.
“As we have reasons to return, they have reasons to stay. Unlike our tribe, most of the refugees do not own land or businesses back home. They cannot make both ends meet even if peace is fully restored,” he stated.
“But if we receive a positive response from the Taliban, our whole tribe is ready to repatriate,” he added.
“And if not, then we too are here,” Pashtun stated, smiling.
Haji Abdullah, a neighborhood chief at an Afghan refugee camp within the southern port metropolis of Karachi, shared an identical view.
“A very few from here (the camp) want to return to Afghanistan at this point,” Abdullah instructed Anadolu Agency.
Nestled on the northern outskirts of Karachi, this run-down locality with restricted entry to well being care and primary sanitation is home to nearly 250,000 Afghan refugees who have been pressured to flee their nation resulting from a lingering battle.
“Our return is attached with law and order, and economic conditions. If these two things improve, you will see this camp will be empty in a month,” he maintained.
Qaisar Afridi, a spokesman for the UNHCR, stated that situations aren’t “conducive” for repatriation.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, he stated for individuals who are straight returning to Afghanistan with out registering with the UNHCR, “at this level, it’s their very own and well-informed choice. Otherwise, the variety of refugees approaching us for repatriation could be very low.”