UN chief claims Pakistan is world's second largest host of refugees
17 February 2020
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres who started a three-day visit to Pakistan on Sunday, urged the international community to support the country that continue to host millions of refugees from war-shattered Afghanistan.
It is doubtful whether the UN chief is unaware or is pretending to be ignorant of the fact that Pakistan is driving away its own citizens of non-Muslim faith or making them refugees in Pakistan itself.
Guterres’s call comes after meeting some Afghan refugees in Pakistan who were forced to flee their country following attacks by Pakistan-supported Taliban. The UN chief also conveniently decided to overlook human rights violations in the provinces of Sindh, Baluchistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Instead he called for India and Pakistan to defuse tensions over Kashmir and emphasized “the absolute need" for Indian authorities to “fully” respect human rights in the disputed majority Muslim region.
Guterres is in Islamabad for meetings with Pakistani leaders and to deliver a keynote address to an international conference on Monday (today) marking Pakistan’s four decades of support for Afghan refugees.
He also addressed an event on Sustainable Development and Climate Change, in Islamabad, on Sunday.
Addressing a news conference in the Pakistani capital, Guterres said despite its own challenges and limited support from the international community, Pakistan has sheltered Afghan refugees for 40 years, making it the world’s second largest host of the refugees.“
One can only imagine how much worse the plight of Afghans would be, and how unstable the region might be without Pakistan’s stellar example of hospitality and compassion,” Guterres noted.
He reaffirmed the world body’s continued support for Pakistan and called on other developed nations to support the country “and indeed show similar leadership in sharing this responsibility in this region and around the world.”
The U.N. estimates that some 4.6 million Afghans, including 2.7 million registered refugees, still live outside of Afghanistan. Around 90 per cent of them are being hosted by Pakistan (1.4 million) and Iran (1 million).