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The History Of The Afghanistan Refugees History Essay

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At the beginning this paper discusses the case of Afghanistan refugees. Explaining the causes of leaving the land and the consequences on the countries receive the refugees and to find the best solution regarding this crisis.

Concerning the causes which let the Afghans began leaving their country. In April 1978, when the Marxist people's Democratic Party of Afghanistan, overthrew the government of Muhammad Dauod. Who had himself seized power from his cousin afghan king Zahir in a bloodless coup in 1973. Refugees is a model example of forced migration, who according to the UN convention relating to the status of refugees must be outside his or her country of nationality and unable or unwilling to return due to a great fear of discrimination for anyone of five reasons: race, nationality, religion, membership of a social group or political opinion, in addition to external aggression or occupation (Robinson 2003:5). The Soviet Union invaded in December 1979, seemingly to restore order to country as the PDPA become increasingly broken. While political infighting was certainly a problem, some observes also noted that Afghanistan's leadership had begun annoying Moscow by making decisions without soviet approval. The soviet attempt to conquer the Afghans was at times particularly brutal, including the alleged use of torture and collective punishment. By the beginning of 1981 some 3.7 million refugees had escaped to Pakistan and Iran. The case of the Afghan refugees is unique in the twentieth century they make up the greatest population of the same origin ever transferred outside their own borders a migration from the south to the south. The Afghan refugees constituted up to 60% of the entire world refugee population (schmeidl 2002:5). A survey was completed by UNHCR and the government of Pakistan in March of 2002 that provided a clear picture, for the first time in years of Afghan population in Pakistan. The survey found 3,049,268 Afghans living in Pakistan, 42% of them in camps and 58% in urban areas. Over 81% of the Afghans were pashtuns, with much smaller percentages of Tajik, Uzbeks, Turkmen, and other ethic groups. Most Afghans in Pakistanis date their arrival to the early years of the soviet occupation, agricultural and economic instability have long been a feature of life in the highlands of Afghanistan. Many of the fleeing Afghans had connections, social networks, kinship ties, economic contacts in Pakistan that helped ease their transition.

Concerning the refugees in Iran in contrast to Pakistan, there are almost no refugee settlements in Iran. Instead, Afghans tend to occupy urban areas where as long as they have official refugee status they are entitled to basic government subsidized services such as health care and education. In addition, on October 2001 Iran agreed to build camps to accommodate new refugees escaping from US bombing and internal chaos in Afghanistan. Since 1978 millions of Afghans wanted refugee in neighboring countries. Inside Afghanistan, millions of Afghans rely on international food aids for survival. The economy was broken by years of civil strife, suffered a further below when the worst lack in 30 years caused crop failures that led hundreds of thousands of Afghans to leave their homes in search of food beginning in June 2000. In May 2001, the world food program warned that more than 1 million Afghans were facing scarcity condition, and in September reported that in some areas people were surviving by eating grass and locusts. Since 11 September attacks, all international aid workers have withdrawn, leaving only a skeleton staff of local unemployed in place. UN high commissioner for refugees describes aid efforts as a "race against clock". Thousands of Afghans could face death from starvation in the coming months. Between 50,000 and 60,000 new refugees had managed to enter Pakistan by mid October according to UNHCR estimates, but the border remains officially closed, reflecting Pakistan's long standing backlash against afghans in the country (emery; Ruiz 2001:2).

As of mid October 2001 barely one third of needed funds had been raised and the world food programmed has only been able to distribute under a quarter of needed food aid. While the death of over 100 afghan IDPs from lack of shelter and freezing weather conditions when they were trapped at the closed orders. While on the other side threat to societal security were not felt in Pakistan. In general the refugees in Pakistan were treated with kindness both by government and local population. By the late 1980's, there were more than 350 refugee villages some more like small cities. The afghan refugees received an extraordinary amount of help; the extended nature of their dislocation was taxing on the tolerance of both the host society as well as the refugees. Therefore the initial kind response, which in a way paralleled an extended honeymoon for the Afghan refugees in Pakistan, slowly came to an end in 1990's as Pakistan began to increasingly blame refugees for the social ills, including crime, the wide spread availability of weapons , drugs abuse prostitution and the decline in the Pakistan economy. This led us to the consequences of Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran. With the defeat of the Taliban, the government of Pakistan began strongly advocating that conditions were appropriate for the return of all Afghans to Afghanistan. The government of Pakistan appears to have both economic and security concern about the afghan population in the Pakistan. On the economic level, some Pakistan politicians convinced that Afghans are taking jobs that might otherwise get to Pakistanis. Moreover, Afghans are reportedly willing to work for lower wages than Pakistanis, causing some Pakistanis to believe that wage levels are being low. Some recent research has shown that several business sectors particularly construction and transport make heavy use of Afghan labor. Economic fears about the Afghan population have become more determined in recent years, as the overall level of international funding for refugees in Pakistan has decreased. The survey provided more fuel for this concern when it revealed that despite the record repatriation, millions of Afghans still remain in Pakistan. Moreover to their economic impact, some Pakistani leaders are concerned that Afghans represent a security risk for Pakistan. There's fear concern lawlessness and anti government activates. There is an observation among many Pakistanis, including government official, that Afghans are responsible for a great deal of the smuggling of stolen goods, weaponry, and narcotics across Pakistan's western border. The smugglers markets are the outskirt of peshwar and quettoy for instance where one can allegedly buy anything from fake passports to heroin to Kalashnikovs are alleged to be run by Afghans and increase because of their proximity to Afghanistan. Pakistani police justified their sweeps though Afghan areas have cited the impotence to break to down on crime. One of the reasons the smugglers markets have been difficult for Islamabad to deal with is that they exist in the so called federally administered tribal areas (FATA), where the central government injection is weak, although each of the FATA seven agencies is apparently governed by a "political agent" appointed by the government in Islamabad. In practice the tribal areas are ruled by traditional pashtuns, exercising a blend of personal decree, Islamic law (sharia) and traditional pashtuns legal practices known collectivity as prohibition against drugs and alcohols, the smuggler's markets have been an important source of revenue for some FATA leaders, who continue to permit this operation. It's not merely lost economic revenue government officials. Many officials believe that the FATA is being used as a staging area for militant activates. Which is against Pakistani government, this fear has grown more several assassination attempts against Pakistanis president Pervez Musharaf. In light of the difficult of verify but nevertheless of declared presumption that Osama bin laden and other senior members of al Qaeda are hiding in the mountainous tribal areas of Pakistan, perhaps with the knowledge of local leaders, the governments efforts to gain control over these areas have gained necessity. Thus security was considered to be one of the reasons behind the government of Pakistan decision to close all of the remaining refugee camps in the FATA. On January 17, 2007 Pakistan's government declared the pending end of four Afghan refugee camps in the border are saying that it was doing so in order to gain security. Regarding the Iranian consequences from gaining the Afghan refugees as in Pakistan there is full evidence that Afghan labor migration plays an important role in both Afghan and Iranian economies. Remittances from Afghans working in Iran bring a good deal revenue to their families in Afghanistan and Afghans continue to be an important source of labor in Iran, where there are particularly prevalent in construction and agriculture of Afghan measure of continuing importance of Afghan labor in Iran is the fact that the government of Iran has recently afforded to led some 200000 Afghans to work in Iran as guest workers' key aspect of this that the Afghan workers will be required to leave their families in Afghanistan most probably to ensure that they will not attempt to emigrate. Many young Afghan men travel to Iran for a period of months or even years to supplement their family income, while the women and other men remain in Afghanistan. This contrasts with many of the Afghans in Pakistan who emigrated with their entire extended families or even whole tribal groups. Although there has not yet been a systematic study of population movement across the Afghan-Iranian border similar to the international organization for migration study of the Afghan Pakistani border, it is clear that since 1979 the volume of Afghan migration to Iran is much less that it is in to Pakistan. To begin with traffic across the Iranian border is more tightly regulated that it is across the Pakistani border. It is not simply to walk from Afghanistan into Iran. Yet, Iran's position, like that of Pakistan has to generally been that it is time for Afghans to return home, and these efforts are part of an clear effort to encourage Afghans to return to Afghanistan. Both Iran and Pakistan argue that relative stability has returned to Afghanistan and there are no further reasons that Afghans require protection abroad (margesson 2007).

Moving to another part concerning the IDPs in Afghanistan since the invasion of the Soviet Union in 1979 led to a resistance war during which five million people, on third of the population Left the country, mostly as refugees to Pakistan and Iran. And also many of IDPs occurred after the invasion. In Kabul had an educated middle class used to a range of social services and civil institution. In the 1970s and 1980s women wore dresses or jeans and t-shirts. They covered their heads if they wanted to. These same women, in the displaced camps have lost these freedoms and must now be careful where they move and must now cover themselves fully. Afghanistan is full of homeless people. The fortunate few are those who live in the house they have always known. They have lost relatives and their house may have been damaged during the regular attack but, one way or another they have managed to stay. The rest have lost their homes for a variety of reasons at worst their home was in the frontline and was totally destroyed, at best they have escaped from the attack but the house still stands and they may be able to return. Many hundreds of thousands live in tents, in camps for displaced people. For this article Oxfam staff talked to women in Kabul, now living in camps in other areas, notably jalalabad, in 1994 where I carried out a series of four foens group discussions, each with 8-10 widows. In foens group, I asked about loss of husband home and city, in the groups, most found it hard to talk about the notion of home they were clear about what home was not but had great difficulty in clearing what was it actually. It was clearly not the tent that was where they lived but it was not home. It was where they slept, but where they slept all together without the kind of privacy they had known. It was where their children were, but where their children wandered aimlessly about in the day time because there was no school to go to. It was the place where problems were continuous, but not the place where there was any space to resolve them. Fatima a young widow whose husband was killed during a rocket attack the year before, voices the dilemma: "I lost my husband and that was the most difficult time. Now we have lost our home and we are like crazy people. I cannot live in this desert. Even if they offered me to be the governor of jalal-abad, I cannot stay here" (emmott 1996). Moreover there were settlements for IDPs around Herat. There were two types of shelter imported by IDPs: Kuchi tents and Yurts. Kuchi tents are made from panels of woven goat's wool that are stretched together over a wooden frame. The wool is thick and black working as good insulator against both the summer's heat and the winter's cold. Each tent takes one family approximately one month to make if there is wool available. There are currently insufficient supplies of wool in Herat for large scale production. While Yurts are dome shaped and are built around a wooden frame. Yurts in Herat had not moved for a relatively long time. The IDPs living in them came from north east Afghanistan. In addition efforts to generate support for the displaced population of Afghanistan generally seemed to receive limited attention perhaps due to a lack of images. In a news conference on 11 October 2001, President George W Bush announced the establishment of America fund for Afghan children. It was presented as a fund to which American children would contribute in order to improve the live of their Afghan counterparts (selm 2002). Finally the return of several million Afghan in the years following the complete soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan in 1989 will be one of the largest refugee repatriations in history. Most refugees will return to Afghanistan southern and eastern provinces this region along the Pakistan Afghanistan border in comparison to northern, western and central provinces has suffered the greatest infrastructural damage, the highest percentage of land abandonment and the most intense fighting.

In conclusion, this was an explanation for the Afghanistan refugee's case. As they fled to Pakistan and Iran and this had an affect on these countries. Also the invasion of the Soviet Union led to a great number of displaced persons whom lived in camps and local areas. And in my own point of view refugees from Afghanistan will continue to escape from their country as a result of the political violence which occurs in the country.


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