In a letter sent to UNHCR through its Permanent Mission in Geneva on 16 July 2018, the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan has officially announced its decision to “join and support the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF)“, as a country of origin. Pre-dating the New York Declaration and its Annex 1 (the CRRF), the Governments of the Islamic Republics of Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan established the Solutions Strategy for Afghan Refugees to Support Voluntary Repatriation, Sustainable Reintegration and Assistance to Host Countries (SSAR) in 2012, with support from UNHCR. The SSAR offers a comprehensive and integrated regional framework for joint interventions and cross border initiatives, aimed at facilitating the voluntary and gradual return of Afghan refugees and their sustainable reintegration, while providing assistance to their host communities and countries.
The Representative of UNHCR in Afghanistan, Ms. Fathiaa Abdalla, welcomes the Government’s decision, emphasizing that “Afghanistan’s commitment to apply the CRRF provides an extraordinary opportunity to showcase good practices as a country of origin, based on the experience gained in implementing the SSAR, especially with regards to proactive inclusion of returnees in Afghanistan’s national policies and priorities”.
Going forward, UNHCR and partners will work closely with the Government of Afghanistan to develop a roadmap and decide upon the way forward in rolling out comprehensive responses in this specific context.
As of 4 August 2018, some 10,631 refugees have returned to Afghanistan and 172,193 people have been newly displaced within Afghanistan.
Photo: ©UNHCR/S. Rich
19 year-old Mursai, who was internally displaced from her village, weaves at the UNHCR supported centre in Mazar (north Afghanistan). The community-based protection project empowers women and fosters their self-esteem. In 2018, UNHCR’s community-based protection measures are targeting 100 communities in high return and displacement areas, as well as 1,200 women under the Global MADE51 initiative linking them with international markets.