Afghan diaspora or Afghan immigrants are citizens of Afghanistan who have immigrated to other countries, or people of Afghan origin who are born outside Afghanistan. Traditionally, the borders between Afghanistan and its southern and eastern neighboring countries have been fluid and vague.[17] Like other nations that were created by European empires, the borders of Afghanistan with neighboring countries often do not follow ethnic divisions, and several native ethnic groups are found on both sides of Afghanistan's border.[18] This means that historically there was much movement across present day barriers.[18]

After the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, refugees fled to neighboring Pakistan and Iran. Some rural Afghan refugees began returning to their homeland in 1992, but the outbreak of a major civil war after the mujahideen took over control of Kabul and the other major cities meant that Afghans again began fleeing to neighboring countries, this time many being urbanites. Afghan Sikhs and Afghan Hindus journeyed to India.[19]

Since March 2002, most Afghan refugees have been repatriated to Afghanistan with UNHCR's assistance.[20][21] Around 1.3 million still remain in Pakistan,[2] while 2.5 million are in Iran.[1] Several countries that were part of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) have granted permanent residency to smaller number of Afghans that worked with their respective forces.[22] Afghan natives now reside in at least 78 countries around the world.[23]

Afghans returning from Pakistan often complain that "they have been beaten and slapped and told nobody in Pakistan wants them anymore."[24] Returnees from Iran experience similar or worst punishments.[25] A number of returnees to Afghanistan make new journeys to the European Union (EU) to seek asylum there.[25] To abide by United Nations Convention against Torture, Pakistan has agreed that no Afghan refugee would be forcefully removed from its country. Under a new agreement between Afghanistan, Pakistan and the UNHCR, the Afghans in Pakistan are officially allowed to remain until the end of 2017.[2] The Afghans in Iran have also been given extended time.[26][27][28]

See also


  1. ^ a b "جدیدترین آمار تعداد مهاجران افغانی در ایران". afkarnews.ir. Retrieved 10 March 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c UNHCR welcomes new government policy for Afghans in Pakistan (UNHCR Feb. 7, 2017)
  3. ^ Shahbandari 2012
  4. ^ [1] Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  5. ^ https://www.rferl.org/a/russia-afghan-community/28926962.html
  6. ^ "2014 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates: Afghan". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 7 February 2016. 
  7. ^ Jonesne 2010, p. 2
  8. ^ http://www.statistik.at/web_de/statistiken/menschen_und_gesellschaft/bevoelkerung/bevoelkerungsstruktur/bevoelkerung_nach_staatsangehoerigkeit_geburtsland/index.html
  9. ^ http://decorrespondent.nl/2826/Dit-is-het-Nederland-van-44000-Afghanen-/475317125712-6199981d
  10. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics 2006
  11. ^ Associated Press 2013
  12. ^ Statistics Canada 2006
  13. ^ Denmark Bureau of Statistics 2014
  14. ^ Statistis Sweden 2018>http://www.statistikdatabasen.scb.se/pxweb/en/ssd/START__BE__BE0101__BE0101E/FodelselandArK/?rxid=49863b20-c606-4311-9e7d-a3947aa39a35
  15. ^ [2]
  16. ^ bq magazine - Qatar´s population by nationality
  17. ^ "The Durand line:History, Consequences, and Future" (PDF). Retrieved 4 June 2014. 
  18. ^ a b Carberry 2013
  19. ^ Bose 2006
  20. ^ Voluntary Repatriation Update (UNHCR Nov. 2016)
  21. ^ UNHCR in Pakistan: An enduring partnership
  22. ^ Stainburn 2013
  23. ^ Braakman, Marije. "Roots and Routes: Questions of Home, Belonging and Return in an Afghan Diaspora" (PDF). 
  24. ^ Joseph Goldstein (February 23, 2015). "Refugees Are Pushed to Exits in Pakistan". The New York Times. Retrieved February 24, 2015. 
  25. ^ a b Joseph Goldstein (September 13, 2015). "For $14.50, Afghan Refugees Make a Desperate Bet on a Way Out". The New York Times. Retrieved September 15, 2015. 
  26. ^ Why are Afghan refugees leaving Iran? (al-Jazeera May 17, 2016).
  27. ^ Abbas Hajimohammadi; Shaminder Dulai, eds. (6 November 2014). "Photos: The Life of Afghan Refugees in Tehran". Newsweek. Retrieved 2014-11-07. 
  28. ^ "Iran: Afghan Refugees and Migrants Face Abuse". Human Rights Watch. Retrieved May 15, 2015. 

Further reading