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22 Nov 2003 description

Islamabad (dpa) - The officials from Pakistan, Afghanistan and the U.N. High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) are to meet in Dubai next month to discuss the deportation of Afghan nationals from Pakistan, a news report said on Saturday.

UNHCR's regional chief Kwame Boafo told reporters in Pakistan's southern Balochistan province on Friday that the December 3 meeting in the Gulf state would also review the U.N-sponsored three-year Aghan refugees' voluntary repatriation programme, daily 'DAWN' reported.

18 Nov 2003 description

By Carsten Hoefer, dpa

Kabul (dpa) - First there were the Soviets, then civil war, finally came U.S. troops hot on the trail of fleeing Taliban fighters: the village of Ishaq Suleyman in western Afghanistan has certainly seen its share of suffering in the past two decades.

Destroyed three times since 1979, the village was also struck by a five-year drought, which left its fields barren and dry, its livestock perishing in the dust. Many families fled, seeking a better

life across the Iranian border, 120 kilometres away.

30 Oct 2003 description

New York (dpa) - A U.N. Security Council delegation will visit Afghanistan next week to discuss ways to expand security beyond Kabul to other parts of the country and review the humanitarian situation there, German Ambassador Gunter Pleuger said Thursday.

30 Sep 2003 description

Brussels (dpa) - The Kabul-based international security force in Afghanistan must be given an expanded mandate to curb increased inter-factional fighting and violence outside the capital, European Union aid officials said Tuesday.

"The security environment in Afghanistan is deteriorating...a vast majority of people support an expansion of the international force,'' Peter Burgess of the E.U. Humanitarian Aid Office (ECHO) told reporters.

"Everybody's task would be made easier if the security situation in Afghanistan improves,'' he said.

10 Sep 2003 description

Eschborn, Germany (dpa) - GTZ, the German development-aid organization, said Wednesday it had won a World Bank contract to oversee local reconstruction work all over Afghanistan.

28 Aug 2003 description

Kabul (dpa) - The tripartite commission of Afghanistan, Pakistan and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) have agreed to accelerate the process of prosecuting and releasing Afghans detained in Pakistan, officials said Thursday.

At the close of two-day talks held in Kabul, Deputy Minister for Repatriation and Refugees, Mohammad Naim Qhiasi told reporters that the tripartite commission had agreed to establish a joint committee to tackle legal and financial issues and provide more facilities for refugees willing to return to Afghanistan from Pakistan.

09 Jul 2003 description

Islamabad (dpa) - A landmine blast Wednesday wounded a woman and a girl at a refugee camp in Afghanistan's southern Kandahar province, Pakistan-based Afghan Islamic Press (AIP) agency reported.

The explosion occurred at a camp in Zere Dasht area, some 35 kilometres west of Kandahar city - once a Taliban stronghold, the report said.

According to eyewitnesses, the landmine blew up after the unnamed Afghan woman lit a makeshift stove on the ground, causing severe burn injuries to her and injuring a young girl.

07 Jul 2003 description

Kabul (dpa) - Two children were killed, 70 houses destroyed and 100 hectares of agricultural land damaged due to a flood in Mohammad Agha district of the western province of Logar, Kabul radio reported Monday.

The Saturday night flood also killed 50 head of cattle as well as damaging a mosque.

In early June, heavy rain and flooding and killed 11 people and affected more than 2,000 people in the north and northeast province of Afghanistan. dpa km pw

AP-NY-07-07-03 0140EDT

30 May 2003 description

Islamabad (dpa) - More than 100,000 Afghan refugees have returned home from Pakistan under a programme to repatriate 600,000 refugees during the year, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) office in Islamabad announced on Friday.

Afghan refugees seeking assistance to return home are registered by UNHCR and undergo a number of checks to receive a travel grant ranging from 3 dollars to 35 dollars and food and non-food items upon reaching home.

16 May 2003 description

Lahore (dpa) - About 600 Afghan refugees Friday left from the central Pakistani city of Lahore under a three-year voluntary repatriation programme jointly launched by the United Nations High Commission for refugees (UNHCR), Pakistan and Afghanistan.

03 Mar 2003 description

Islamabad (dpa) - An agreement on the voluntary repatriation of up to 600,000 Afghan refugees from Pakistan will be signed on March 18 in Geneva, Rudd Lubbers head of the United Nations refugee agency said Monday, official media reported.

The tripartite agreement on the proposed repatriation was reached between Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in October of last year.

Lubbers arrived in Pakistan after inspecting UNHCR operations in Afghanistan.