Countries hosting Afghan refugees
When the Taliban came to power, many Afghans quickly left their country. This is due to the fear caused by violent reprisals and the strict control of militias, as happened in the late 1990s. In this context, many Western countries have already committed themselves to receiving refugees.
UNHCR noted that many Afghans who tried to leave the country were not allowed to do so. The Taliban set up checkpoints around Kabul International Airport to prevent departures.
These are some of the countries that welcomed the Afghans.
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Pakistan, which has the longest border with all of Afghanistan’s neighbors, already has about 1.4 million registered refugees who have been living there for decades. The number is doubled if non-registrants are taken into account.
When he learned that the Taliban had seized power, hundreds of terrified Afghan civilians gathered in the border town, but only merchants with valid travel documents were allowed to pass.
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According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, there are about 780,000 Afghan citizens on Iranian soil, and its authorities require all Afghans to have access to border crossings.
Turkey, which already has 3.6 million registered Syrian refugees and some 320,000 new citizens, has long been concerned about a possible wave of migrants from Iran to Afghanistan.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to build a wall on the Iranian border after hundreds of Afghans arrived in the country in recent weeks.
So far, the army has evacuated more than 5,200 people, 2,000 of them on the last day. Joe Biden’s government has promised to evacuate 22,000 vulnerable Afghans through an allied refugee operation.
The United States urges third countries to place asylum seekers temporarily in Afghanistan for the duration of the visa process. Uganda has already committed to hosting 2,000 refugees.
In London, 20,000 refugees have been promised resettlement over five years, and the first 5,000 are expected to arrive this year. Boris Johnson’s government has announced that 10 RAF flights leave Kabul daily and that Afghans are working with the elements and their families.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said up to 10,000 people should be evacuated, including German troops in Afghanistan, humanitarian workers, lawyers and others at risk.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has announced that his country will accept the evacuation of Afghans working temporarily in the European Union. On Thursday, the first transport of displaced Spaniards and Afghans from Kabul landed at Madrid’s Torrejon de Ardoz airport.
Three countries in Latin America have expressed their willingness to take in large numbers of refugees, and women and girls are a priority: Mexico, Chile and Costa Rica.
Mexican Foreign Minister, Marcelo Ebrard, announced, via his Twitter account, that the government will start processing the first asylum applications of Afghan nationals through the Mexican embassy in Iran.
Chile has accepted Afghans who are dedicated to promoting women’s rights and who feel threatened. President Sebastian Pinera has announced his commitment to hosting ten families through the NGO Front Line Defenders programme.
Costa Rica announced the creation of a “Humanitarian Front for Afghan Women and Girls”. Vice President Epsy Campbell announced on his Twitter account that “Costa Rica has decided to open its borders” and called on other countries to act “like the real United Nations!” @usual
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