Decision on deportation of Afghan immigrants ‘disastrous’ – former ISI chief

The ongoing deportation of undocumented Afghan immigrants from Pakistan has faced criticism from Afghan and Pakistani politicians who deem the decision as “disastrous,” asserting that it fails to address Pakistan’s concerns and that it will spread insecurity in northern Afghanistan.

According to United Nations figures, over 400,000 undocumented Afghan migrants have been deported to Afghanistan since mid-September.

Asad Durrani, former head of Pakistan’s intelligence agency, expressed his reservations, stating, “It’s not the decision by Pakistan. It’s the establishment decision, which I think is a disastrous one. I can’t think of any good reason why it should have happened. This is a decision that cannot help us.”

Addressing the Herat Security Dialogue, Afghan politicians raised concerns about the mass expulsions, alleging that Islamabad aims to alter Afghanistan’s population composition, leading to increased insecurity in the northern parts of the country.

“Millions of Afghan citizens have left, and instead, Pakistan is following the program of resettling millions of immigrants with the aim of changing the composition of the Afghan population and spreading insecurity in the west and north of the country,” said former Jihadi leader Mohammad Ismail Khan.

Bashir Ahmad Tahyanj, the spokesman of the National Islamic Movement of Afghanistan, expressed worries about the displacement of individuals associated with Waziristan and the Pakistani Taliban in northern Afghanistan under the guise of immigrants.

Figures provided by Pakistani authorities indicate that on Monday, November 27, at least 1,490 Afghan immigrants were deported from Pakistan.

Wahid Faqiri, a political affairs analyst, highlighted concerns about the government of Pakistan warning Afghan immigrants against participating in elections and supporting candidates. He emphasized that such actions indicate encouragement of persecution against Afghans.

The Ministry of Interior of Pakistan has also advised its citizens not to employ foreign citizens, including Afghans, and not to assist them in finding employment. Concurrently, Pakistani media reported that the interim prime minister of Pakistan has decided to deport hundreds of thousands of Afghan refugees due to security concerns.

Conflicting statistics exist about the number of returned and deported Afghan migrants from Pakistan.