Pakistan seeks dignified return of Afghan refugees: FM Qureshi

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that Pakistan is pursuing a policy of return of Afghan refugees with dignity, safety and honor.

While addressing the two-day Refugee Summit Islamabad on “40 years of Afghan Refugees Presence in Pakistan: A New Partnership for Solidarity” in Islamabad on Monday, the minister said that every refugee is hoping that peace will restore leading to repatriation.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that Pakistan hosted five million Afghan refugees and today three million registered and unregistered Afghan refugees are residing in Pakistan. He said that Pak-Afghan relations have provided impetus to host millions of Afghan refugees.

The foreign minister said that peace and stability is indispensable and Pakistan would continue supporting Afghan owned and Afghan led peace process.

The minister urged the world to join hands with Pakistan to provide basic needs to Afghan refugees and enable them to live a dignified life. He said that the international cooperation is required more than ever before.

Qureshi said that Afghan refugees are expecting the world to rebuild their country after restoration of peace there.

In his remarks at Refugee Summit Islamabad, the Afghan Second Vice President Danish Sarwar said that they are thankful to Pakistan for hosting Afghan refugees for 40 years.

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Danish Sarwar said that Pakistan played the role of a brotherly Country by hosting millions of Afghan refugees. He said that we cannot forget as to how Pakistan and Iran opened their doors for Afghan refugees.

The Afghan second vice president said that his government wants repatriation of Afghan refugees; however, for that end of the war is imperative.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said in the Conference that for the last 40 years, the people of Pakistan have stood with Afghan neighbors. He said that Pakistan’s solidarity to hosting refugees is admirable.