United States Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, U.S. Committee for Refugees World Refugee Survey 1997 - Uzbekistan, 1 January 1997, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6a8a418.html [accessed 24 May 2017]
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Some 40,000 asylum seekers and persons in refugee-like situations were believed to be living in Uzbekistan at year's end. According to the government, there were an estimated 30,000 Tajiks, 8,000 Afghans, and "several thousand" asylum seekers from other countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), including Azerbaijan, Georgia, and the Russian Federation (Chechnya), in Uzbekistan. Most of the Tajik asylum seekers were of ethnic Uzbek origin and were living with relatives in rural areas. Most Afghan refugees lived in urban areas. Uzbekistan, which had not acceded to the UN Refugee Convention and lacked national refugee status legislation, regarded the Afghan and Tajik asylum seekers as economic migrants. Such individuals reportedly faced harassment and were the targets of bribe extraction efforts if they came forward to government officials. UNHCR handled all registration and refugee status determination procedures, and had registered 2,961 asylum seekers in Uzbekistan by year's end, recognizing 960 of them as mandate refugees. During 1996, UNHCR registered 334 new asylum seekers. Of these, 285 were from Afghanistan, and 35 were from other countries within the CIS. UNHCR recognized 40 Afghans and one Iraqi as mandate refugees and rejected 40 other applications during the year. Emigration Russian authorities reported that nearly 24,000 persons arrived in the Russian Federation from Uzbekistan in 1996. Russia's Federal Migration Service registered more than 2,000 as refugees and nearly 22,000 as forced migrants.