Academic journal article Social Education

Repatriating Afghan Refugees. (in Focus)

Academic journal article Social Education

Repatriating Afghan Refugees. (in Focus)

Article excerpt

IF THE 21-YEAR-LONG CIVIL WAR does end in Afghanistan, the return and reintegration of over 3.5 million Afghan refugees and internally displaced people will be crucial to building long-term peace in Afghanistan and stability in Central Asia. How can such an enormous task be launched?

Helping people return to their cities and villages will be a great challenge for the new government and international relief agencies. Landmines litter the roads and countryside, where live U.S. cluster bombs are also present. Mountainous villages cannot be reached by trucks when snowdrifts dose the roads. Food convoys are occasionally delayed or looted by lawless militia. Despite these difficulties, various nations have pledged $740 million to date, and mass starvation has been averted in Afghanistan this winter.

If reconstruction is to succeed, the world's wealthiest nations will have to commit tens of billions of dollars for weapons turn-in programs, mine clearance, restarting nonopium poppy agriculture, building water and sanitation systems, and education. …

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