The Reverse Exodus: The Forced Repatriation of Afghan Refugees in Pakistan

  • Vasja Badalič
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Victims and Victimology book series (PSVV)


This chapter examines the measures implemented by the Pakistani authorities to force the repatriation of Afghan refugees. The first section of the chapter examines how successive Pakistani governments encouraged anti-refugee sentiment among the local population in order to create circumstances for the forced repatriation program. The second section explores how specific measures introduced by Pakistani authorities compromised the physical, legal and material safety of Afghan refugees before and during the repatriation process. The last section shows how the Pakistani authorities prevented Afghan refugees from exercising free choice when deciding whether or not to return to their country of origin. The section argues that Pakistan, with the tacit support of the UNHCR, breached the principle of non-refoulement.


Afghan refugees Pakistan UNHCR Push-back measures Forced repatriation Physical safety Legal safety Material safety The principle of non-refoulement 


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vasja Badalič
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Criminology at the Faculty of LawLjubljanaSlovenia

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