Thursday, May 25, 2023
Dangerous Journey Between Afghanistan and Pakistan
From the east to the south-west of Afghanistan, across the Durand Line, a fence some 2,600 kilometres long divides the two countries. Spotlights beaming from guard posts chase through the mountains to ensure no travelers, from refugees to migrants, cross to the other side overnight. . . .
Nevertheless, many Afghans attempt to travel to Pakistan, whether regularly or irregularly, usually to work, study, seek medical treatment, visit family or flee life-threatening situations. Smuggling routes are being used more frequently as many Afghans lack the legal documentation required to travel. In March 2023, at least 340,000 Afghans traveled to Pakistan through the border points and an estimated higher number did so through irregular crossing points. . .
Today, the IOM Reception Centre in Spin Boldak is receiving more and more undocumented returnees and deportees who did not or could not obtain legal status in Pakistan. Since the beginning of the year, there has been a spike of undocumented Afghans being deported. More than 2,000 people were deported from January to March 2023, compared to 500 in the same period of last year. This number is likely to quickly surpass the total number of deportations recorded in 2022 (2,900). . .