Iran Asked Money for Providing Services to Afghan Refugees

Kabul – The Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian during his meeting with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said that the international community should pay special attention to the living conditions of Afghan citizens, stressing that Iran does not have the capacity to provide more services to asylum seekers.

Amir-Abdollahian raised the issue during a meeting with Filippo Grandi, the head of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, on Monday night, December 20, the Iranian media have reported.

“Iran is unable to provide services due to the large influx of Afghan refugees; therefore, the international community should pay a special fee so that the country provides services to these immigrants,” said Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, the Iranian Foreign Minister.

In addition, Amir-Abdollahian appreciated the UNHCR’s assistance for Afghan refugees and informed Grandi that the aid provided was not even significant compared to the volume of movements in Iran.

Moreover, he stated that more than 520,000 foreign students in Iran are studying for free and that vaccination of Afghan asylum seekers is being carried out in the same way as Iranian nationals and said: “Providing services to Afghan immigrants exceeds Iran’s existing capacity, and the international community must pay special attention to the living conditions of the Afghan people.”

The international aid is very small although the volume of migration of Afghan citizens to neighboring countries is very high, he stressed.

Furthermore, Amir-Abdollahian further called on the commissioner of this organization to be more active inside Afghanistan and to help reduce the number of refugees in Afghanistan by providing relief aid inside that country.

In the meantime, he also noted that European countries should also pay their share in this regard, saying that while the presence of only a few thousand refugees in central Europe has become a crisis, and one should not expect Iran to help migrants well just by saying kind words.

In addition, the Iranian Foreign Minister also suggested that the (UNHCR) support an international conference to raise funds for the Afghan people.

Meanwhile, Filippo Grandi praised Iran’s services to asylum seekers and stressed that the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has continued its work inside Afghanistan, and welcomed the Iranian Foreign Minister’s proposal to support an international conference to raise funds for the Afghan people.

Iran has expressed concern over the influx of migrants and called for help as it hosts millions of Afghan refugees; however, there were earlier reports that the country was repatriating Afghan refugees who had fled the country for fear of the Taliban.