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Inhumanely treated in Turkey, grumble Afghan migrants

13 Apr 2024 - 10:53
13 Apr 2024 - 10:53

 

KABUL (Pajhwok): “We face a number of challenges in Turkey and inhumane treatment by Turkish authorities”, a number of Afghan migrants in the country say.

Afghanistan Ministry of Refugees and Repatriates (MoRR) admits Afghan migrants are facing various problems in Turkey and insist they have shared the issue with Turkish officials several times.

According to the BBC, more than 300,000 immigrants from Afghanistan live in Turkey, and hundreds of thousands asylum seekers enter the country illegally.

Afghan migrants say they face forced deportation to Afghanistan.

According to reports, Turkey forcibly deported more than 3,000 Afghan migrants during the first three months of 2023 on 20 chartered flights. The country forcefully deported more than 55,000 asylum seekers in 2022.

Last year, Refugee Rights Organizations in Turkey said that Turkey’s refugee agency had rejected more than 90 percent of asylum seekers’ applications.

Once again, reports about ill-treatment of Afghan refugees and asylum seekers in Turkey have surfaced.

An Afghan asylum seeker Saiful Islam in Istanbul city told Pajhwok Afghan News that after the political change in Afghanistan, many Afghans attempted to enter Turkey illegally from Iran.

He said: “The journey from Iran to Turkey is very challenging because the route passes through mountainous areas, sometimes clashes occur between migrants and border police and the migrants get hurt. Problems such as cold weather, arrests and deportations are common.”

He said Afghans were often harassed in different cities of Turkey especially when there were elections or any other special day or a security incident.

According to Saiful Islam, the arrested Afghans are usually taken to camps where they lack access to healthy food, attorney and are held for months without trial and the government pays no attention to their problems.

Gulbadin Nazari, another Afghan migrant, said: “The refugees in Turkey face many challenges … police arrest migrants who work in factories and take them to camps where they are treated like animals and have no facilities of life.”

He said those attempting to migrate to Europe risked death, spent a lot of money and then faced arrests and deportations. “They also endure inhumane treatment by security forces.”

MoRR spokesman Abdul Mutalib Haqqani told Pajhwok: “No doubt, most Afghans who migrated to Turkey via illegal routes faced arrests, imprisonments and they are kept in camps where they have no access to primary facilities of life and are treated badly.”

He said the MoRR used to hold meetings with the Turkish ambassador and diplomats from time to time about problems of refugees and had also sent delegations to that country to see the problems of migrants closely and share their problems with Turkish authorities.

Haqqani said: “Afghans who leave the country for other countries due to some problems spend a lot of money and suffer hardships. Such people must be given time to live, work and get some money they had spent.”

According to reports, refugees who reside in Pakistan and Iran also face many challenges, but those without legal documents face forced deportations.

aw/ma

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