China has planned to provide aid medical equipment worth $ 250,000 to Afghan refugees in Pakistan this year for improving their living conditions, reports Gwadar Pro, quoting ambassador Yao Jing, as having said here at the Refugees’ summit.
As a responsible leading power and an important neighbor of Afghanistan, China has been cooperating with the United Nations, Pakistan, Iran and other countries to provide assistance to Afghan refugees.
In 2019, China donated about US $ 350,000 to the Afghanistan Red Crescent. Through the multilateral channels, China has provided US $ 1.3 million goods to Afghan refugees in Pakistan through the Pakistani government and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refuges (UNHCR).”
The issue of Afghan refugee, ambassador Yao Jing said, was one of the largest and longest-running refugee crisis in history. “As a result of more than 40 years of war and conflict, 2.7 million Afghan refugees are currently scattered in more than 70 countries around the world. From 2002 to 2017, a total of 5.24 million refugees returned to Afghanistan, but the gap between humanitarian relief needs and funding continued to widen, and the Afghan refugee resettlement fee gap is as high as US $ 530 million.
Because of the lack of living skills and jobs, many refugees who have returned to Afghanistan have to leave their homes again and continue a displaced life,” Yao Jing said.
He pinpointed, “the opportunity to tackle the Afghan refugee issue appears. The situation in Afghanistan has entered a critical juncture. The United States and the Afghan Taliban are expected to reach a peace agreement soon, which will pave the way for the political parties in Afghanistan to start the intra-Afghan negotiation on the future domestic political arrangements.”
He said the reconciliation negotiation will lead to the early peace in Afghanistan and start the reconstruction of Afghan.
Pakistan and Afghanistan, Yao Jing said, “have reached significant consensus on the settlement of Afghan refugee issue within the Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity (APAPPS). Both sides have closely coordinated and cooperated in refugee registration and repatriation. It is the above developments that bring the hope of peace as well as prosperity to the Afghan refugees wandering in foreign lands.”
He said Chinese often seek addressing both symptoms and root causes when solving a problem. “We always believe that foreign assistance can only solve the symptoms in settling the Afghan refugee issue. However, addressing the root causes means resolving disputes through dialogue and consultation, achieving lasting peace in Afghanistan and the region. In this context, I would like to share with you some suggestions,” he added.
Firstly, he said, cope with the Afghan refugee issue within the multilateral framework. The refugee issue is the common crisis of mankind. “In the context of reverse globalization emerging and populism prevailing, China calls on upholding the authority of multilateral mechanisms with the United Nations at the core, persisting in the main channels of UNHCR and other multilateral mechanisms in resolving the issue. We advocate fully implementing the Global Compact on Refugees on the basis of respecting the sovereignty of each country, jointly sharing the responsibilities in the huge task of settling the issue,” Yao Jing said.
Secondly, the envoy said, “development is the top priority. The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is the public good presented to the world by China. We believe that BRI could definitely play its role in international refugees governance. China is ready to enhance regional connectivity with Pakistan and Afghanistan, exploring the model to extend the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) to Afghanistan.”
China, he said, “sincerely welcomes the international partners to join this process. We are willing to initiate some social livelihood projects based on the China-Pakistan-Afghanistan trilateral cooperation mechanism, for example, Pakistan-Afghanistan border ports construction, education training, medical and health care. We hope these measures could contribute to the capacity building and self-reliance of the repatriating refugees, living in a more dignified manner.”
Thirdly, he said, “maintain order in the post troop-withdrawn period. We call on the relevant countries withdrawing their troops from Afghanistan in an orderly and responsible manner, ensuring a smooth and peaceful transition of Afghanistan situation. We expect that Afghan Government and Taliban could reach peaceful reconciliation.
We hope the political parties of Afghan could establish a dialogue framework and initiate intra-Afghan negotiations in light of the Afghan-led and Afghan owned principle at an early time. Only by promoting the peace process could all parties create conducive conditions for safe and sustainable self-repatriation of the refugees,” he added.