Pakistan hosts 1.3 million Afghan refugees

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), with assistance of the Pakistani government, has completed the verification of 1.3 million registered Afghan refugees residing in the South Asian country.

Chief Commissioner for Afghan Refugees in Pakistan Saleem Khan said that data of Afghans was not updated in the last ten years, therefore it was imperative to verify and update records.

He said the verified record will help Pakistan to better understand existing needs in the refugee communities.

This verification process provided an opportunity for Afghan refugees to flag specific protection needs or vulnerabilities, Radio Pakistan reported.

UNHCR's Representative to Pakistan Ms Noriko Yoshida, underscored that the smart cards are an essential protection tool for Afghan refugees. She said smart cards facilitate access to certain essential services, including education, healthcare, banking, property rental and allied facilities.

SOURCE: Daily Pakistan


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