Deputy UN High Commissioner for Refugees calls on the Foreign Minister

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Islamabad:(Rana Tariq)

Deputy UN High Commissioner for Refugees Kelly T. Clements called on Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari today during her visit to Pakistan. Discussions were focused on the Afghan refugee situation and the longstanding cooperation between Pakistan and UNHCR.

The Foreign Minister emphasized the importance of sustained engagement by the international community in support of Afghan refugees as well as for the provision of humanitarian and economic assistance to the people of Afghanistan. He underscored that the new humanitarian situations emerging around the world must not divert the global attention away from the needs of millions of Afghans.

While appreciating the assistance by UNHCR over the years in looking after millions of Afghan refugees in Pakistan, the Foreign Minister stressed the need for adequate, predictable, regular and sustained financial support from the international community for sustainable returns as well as for the host communities on the principle of international burden and responsibility-sharing. The Deputy High Commissioner thanked Pakistan for being an incredible host to millions of Afghan refugees over the past several decades.

Both sides agreed to continue working closely for the provision of necessary assistance to Afghan refugees, and the implementation of sustainable solutions for their well-resourced, safe and dignified return.