Ambassador Haidari Meets UN Resident Coordinator to Discuss Protection of Afghan Refugees in Sri Lanka
Colombo: - Ambassador M. Ashraf Haidari called on UN Resident Coordinator Hanaa Singer on May 23, 2019. Following his recent meeting with the Head of UNHCR Office in Colombo, they discussed a range of issues of mutual interest, including the protection needs of Afghan refugees in Sri Lanka, some of whom have been affected by communal violence that followed the tragic terrorist attacks on April 21.
Both sides agreed that one of the key durable solutions to the plight of Afghan refugees is resettlement until the situation in Afghanistan for voluntary repatriation has improved on a sustainable basis.
Ambassador Haidari greatly appreciated the special attention, which the Resident Coordinator has paid to all refugees, working in close collaboration with the Government of Sri Lanka to help ensure the safety of refugees and asylum seekers, including those from Afghanistan. Of some 1500 refugees in Sri Lanka, only a small number of them hail from Afghanistan where ongoing generalized violence and frequent terrorist attacks have driven them out.
Read one of Ambassador Haidari’s early articles on “The Plight of Afghan Refugees,” discussing the main drivers of Afghan refugees’ flight. The piece illustrates how Afghans have been a primary target of terrorism and violent extremism and thus must not be subjected to any violence in reaction to the devastating attacks that were carried out by Sri Lankan extremists, who happened to be Muslim.