Kabul – International Organisation for Migration (IOM) on Thursday said over half a million Afghan citizens returned home after stints living in Iran and Pakistan in 2019.
The bulk of the returns, 485,000 people, were from Iran, which an economic crisis has turned into a less attractive place to live.
Many Afghans who have moved to Iran in the last decade have taken work in the black market there, which has been one of the areas most pinched by the economic problems.
“Just more than half of those who returned from Iran were deported.
“The rest came of their own free will,’’ the IOM said.
In 2018, 773,000 made the trip from Iran back to Afghanistan.
The figures for both years refer to individuals not registered as refugees.
Additionally, the IOM reported that over 25,500 Afghans returned home from Turkey in 2019.
Of those, 573 returned with IOM assistance.
Meanwhile, over 25,000 were returned by Turkey.
Report says it is not clear how well they will integrate back home.
Afghanistan also suffers from high unemployment, weak economic development and a large number of internally displaced persons. (dpa/NAN)