[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Saturday, 6 August 2005, 10:58 GMT 11:58 UK
Pakistan 'to close refugee camps'
Afghan refugees
A number of border camps have already been closed
Pakistan is to close all camps for Afghan refugees in tribal areas along the Afghan border, the United Nations Refugee Agency(UNHCR) says.

A UHNCR statement said the move would affect more than 105,000 refugees who could not be helped properly because of security problems in the region.

The government will offer them voluntary repatriation or relocation within Pakistan, the UNHCR says.

It is estimated that Pakistan hosts over three million Afghan refugees.

In recent years more than two million have returned home.

Millions of Afghans fled their homeland after the invasion by Soviet troops, mainly for Pakistan and Iran. Refugee numbers were further swelled during years of civil war and rule by the hardline Taleban.


The UNHCR says it agrees with the Pakistani government's decision to close two camps in the Kurram and Bajaur agencies on the Afghan border.

It says it is impossible to offer proper assistance to the refugees in border areas because of continuing clashes between the military and militants.

A number of refugee camps have already been closed in other border areas.

Earlier this week the government said it was relocating Afghan refugees camped in the capital Islamabad and nearby Rawalpindi for security reasons.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific