East or West, Pakistan is the best
By Ghafar Ali
PESHAWAR: Subhanallah, a 22-year old Afghan electronic goods dealer at the Karkhano market, is reluctant to go back to Afghanistan in the current situation.
“It will be very unfortunate if we are forced to leave Pakistan,” said the refugee, born in the Utmanzai refugee camp in district Charsadda. “We live with the Pakistanis like they are our brothers. The government’s move to force us to go back to a country where nobody’s life and property are safe will spur hatred for Pakistan among the Afghans,” he said. He said there are no businesses, no education and health services, no communication facilities and no peace in Afghanistan. “We will never forget this injustice by the Pakistani government,” he said.
Haji Ghadro Gul, a 60-year-old Afghan, said he was willing to go back but his children were not ready. “My children were born in Pakistan and they regard Pakistan as their homeland,” he said. He said that his home in Jalalabad had been destroyed in the war. “After the parliamentary elections are held and a stable government is set up in Afghanistan, we will be in a position to go back,” he said.
Subhanullah said the Afghans should be given Pakistani nationality like the Kashmiris and those who migrated at the time of independence. Abdul Wadood, who is returning to Afghanistan under the UNHCR voluntary repatriation programme, said that repatriation was a good step but not it was not the right time for it. He said these people would have no homes and no jobs in Afghanistan.
He said that the UNHCR abandons the refugees in the Chora Galli desert in Afghanistan and does not provide tents.