Afghanistan’s migrants call for Pakistani police to end campaign of mistreatment

A number of Afghanistan nationals who live in Pakistan claim they continue to be faced with “mistreatment and torture” by the Pakistani police.

Speaking to Amu, the migrants said that they had no option but to live in Pakistan but added that they’re living like “prisoners.”

Recently, many migrants from Afghanistan were arrested by the Pakistani police in Islamabad for having expired visas.

“The trip by Hina Rabbani Khar is a symbolic trip and will never address any issue,” said Zahir Bahand, an Afghanistan national in Pakistan. “Arrests are underway in Islamabad and Rawalpindi over the past year.”

“I was detained by (Pakistani) police four days back. I had visa and Passport. I was kept for four hours,” said Shirin Agha, an Afghanistan migrant in Pakistan.

Meanwhile, a lawyer for Afghanistan migrants in Karachi city, Munira Kakar, said that at least 3,000 migrants from Afghanistan, including women and children, have been arrested by the Pakistani police since July 2022 and that 270 are still in custody in Sindh province.

“Afghan migrants have changed into a lucrative income source for Pakistani police who collect money from them under various pretexts,” said Kakar.

The Taliban embassy in Islamabad has said that more than 30,000 Afghanistan nationals have been released from Pakistani prisons and have been helped to return home.

Reports from IOM show that 3.6 million Afghanistan nationals chose to migrate in 2022 and 2023 and that 18 percent of them have migrated to Pakistan.

Amnesty International this week called on the Pakistani government to end the mistreatment of Afghanistan’s migrants.