The Islamic Government of Afghanistan has the confidence that in the areas under its control, people are enjoying peace, security, social and economic progress.  Emphasising the observance of rights and freedom of all Afghans who are living outside the country as refugees, the Islamic Government of Afghanistan will assist them to return to their home country and participate in the reconciliation process and restoration of peace, consultation and social progress according to Islamic laws.

Islamic Government of Afghanistan, with provision of facilities will be taking secure measures in order to facilitate better/favourable condition for voluntary/prompt repatriation of Afghan refugees in safety and dignity.


a)   All Afghan refugees are invited/encouraged to return to their home country and settle, wherever, they wish to select and participate in national reconciliation process, rehabilitation, restoration of peace through consultation, Shura, social and economic progress.

b)   Announce the following:

1.   Voluntary return and resettlement will be taking place in safety, dignity and honour according to well-known international laws.

2.   None of the returnees will be followed, persecuted, interrogated or will be subjected to punishment for taking refuge in Pakistan, Iran or other countries.

3.   None of the returnees will be subjected to discrimination, threat and persecution because of his ethnic group, membership in a special social group, political believe and sex.


4.   All returnees, without consideration of their political/ethnic relationship, including those who occasional have committed crimes before or during immigration, except the fights due to a man, will not be followed or persecuted.

Those who have left the country and have taken refuge in Pakistan, Iran and other countries and those who have joined different commanders to avoid military service of joined the lines of unknown groups, will not be subjected to judicial persecution.

Respect for human rights:

5.   In case of returnees, like other nationals, human rights and basic freedom will be respected completely.

Monitoring the returnees

6.   Taking into consideration the well known standards of human rights and checking the undertakings included in this statement, UNHCR and other relevant international organisations have permission to watch/observe the ways that we are dealing with returnees.

Access to Land

7.   Returnees will have access to land for the purpose of settlement and agricultural as per laws valid in Afghanistan.


8.   Any relevant action will be taken to facilitate the restoration of the land and other non transferable properties which have been left behind or lost by the refugees.

Military and other compulsory services

9.   In order to help the resettlement of repatriates, all returnees are exempted from military services for one year, including residual military cases and other compulsory services; request of the returnees for the permanent exemption from military and other compulsory services will be evaluated positively.

A. R. Ghaforzai

16 August 1997

This is the official text, signed on 16 August 1997. The Act is Cap. 490.

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