EghtesadOnline: The number of Afghan refugees returning from Iran has doubled recently, as Iranian currency loses its value against the US dollar in an unprecedented manner.
According to the International Organization for Migration’s statistics, 8,000 to 10,000 undocumented Afghans are returning home from Iran every day, TOLOnews reported.
IOM said the main reason behind the increase of returnees from Iran is economic challenges created by new US sanctions.
Kazim Elham, the head of Border Returnees Department at IOM, said 429,845 refugees from Iran and 23,301 refugees from Pakistan have been deported or returned voluntarily, according to Financial Tribune.
The Afghan Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation said the number of refugees who have returned home has increased unprecedentedly in recent weeks.
“When the currency loses its value, refugees cannot afford their daily expenses there. Therefore, they decide to return to Afghanistan,” said Islamuddin Jurat, the head of Communications and Public Relations Department of MoRR.
An Afghan refugee who returned from Iran last month said the money a refugee gains from working in Iran is only enough for his living costs and that he cannot save the money for his family.
Shahida Durani said he was working in Tehran but was not earning enough money due to the fall of Iranian rial against the US dollar.
“Six months ago, we would work from 16,000 to 17,000 AFs in a month. But now one million Iranian tomans is equal to 7,000 AFs which is not enough,” said Durani.
Durani, 28, said two years ago he spent lots of money to reach Iran through illegal routes, but this year he had no option but to leave as he could not make savings there.
IOM statistics show that 514,405 Afghans returned home from Iran and Pakistan from January 1 to August 25, of which 492,343 returned home from Iran.
Statistics show that Iran still hosts 2.14 million Afghan refugees.