World Refugee Day observed

World Refugee Day observed

Islamabad (Web Desk): World Refugee Day was observed on Monday across the world including Pakistan to honour the courage, strength and determination of refugees who are forced to flee their homeland under threat of persecution, conflict and violence.

This year's theme of the day is "Seeking safety is a human right. Wherever they come from, people forced to flee should be welcomed".

The day also aims to build empathy and understanding for the plight of refugees and to recognise their resilience in rebuilding their lives.

According to the latest factsheet issued by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Pakistan continues to be one of the world’s largest refugees hosting countries, providing safety to some 1.4 million people forced to flee their countries.

These include mainly Afghan refugees holding Proof of Registration, besides a small number of refugees and asylum-seekers from other countries such as Myanmar, Yemen, Somalia and Syria.

For more than forty years, Pakistan has a long and commendable tradition of providing protection to refugees and asylum-seekers.

On the occasion of World Refugee Day, Pakistan has called on the international community to support UN Refugee Agency in its efforts towards durable solutions for refugees worldwide.

In a statement issued in Islamabad on Monday, the Foreign Office (FO) said that renewed international commitment is need of the hour to provide adequate financing for Afghan refugees, including their safe and dignified return.

"Necessary measures should be taken for the stability and sustainable socio-economic development of Afghanistan, in order to avert the possibility of any future refugee exodus from the country," the statement said.

Paying special tribute to UNHCR for its commendable work in support of refugees, the FO expressed readiness to further strengthen Pakistan's partnership with the Refugee Agency.