Exclusive: Pakistan deported Afghans waiting for US resettlement

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Pakistan’s huge deportation drive has forcibly repatriated scores of Afghans awaiting resettlement in the United States, an advocacy group and Afghan applicants say, adding that Pakistani authorities often ignored U.S. embassy letters of protection.

That complicates the efforts of such Afghans, as the U.S. has shuttered its embassy in Kabul and they must also grapple with human rights restrictions and stubborn financial and humanitarian crises in their homeland.

Islamabad began expelling more than a million undocumented foreigners, mostly Afghans, on Nov. 1, amid a row over accusations that Kabul harbours Pakistani militants, a charge the ruling Taliban deny.

More than 450,000 Afghans have returned home, the United Nations says, many now living in difficult winter conditions near the border.

At least 130 Afghans being processed for U.S. special immigration visas or refugee resettlement in the United States have been deported, said Shawn VanDiver, president of #AfghanEvac, the main coalition of groups helping such efforts.

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