2022 POPULATION FIGURES (inclusive of all five countries above)
2,526,110 Projected end-2022 Afghan Refugees
1,399,588 Targeted undocumented Afghans and Afghans of other Status
1,776,800 Targeted host community population
Afghanistan’s neighbouring countries, particularly the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, host more than 2.2 million registered refugees from previous waves of forced displacement, and a further 4 million Afghans of varying statuses.
This has stretched the capacity of host communities. The majority of Afghans in both countries reside in urban and peri-urban areas, relying on national public services that are largely available to them. Despite their own challenges and their ’ needs, Iran and Pakistan have upheld their international protection obligations for decades and pursued inclusive policies, notably in areas of education, health care and human capital development.
However, the difficult economic situation in these and other neighbouring countries, exacerbated by the COVID19 pandemic and a growing asylum fatigue in some host communities, is creating further challenges for the host governments to continue their policy of inclusion of Afghans in national systems. This further highlights the need for programmes aimed at fostering coexistence and alleviating the burden on host communities. In addition, humanitarian programmes to support the existing Afghan populations in the region have been critically underfunded in recent years. Across the region, COVID-19 has already triggered unprecedented health, humanitarian and socio-economic crises, and a refugee influx may further stretch v ’ capacities and exacerbate vulnerabilities.
At the same time, the humanitarian situation in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan deteriorated dramatically in 2021, with significant consequences for the most vulnerable among the population. This year, over 682,000 people (80 per cent women and children) have been internally displaced by conflict, adding to some 2.9 million previously displaced by conflict. One in three Afghans is already food insecure, and 97 per cent of the population could plunge into poverty by 2022. The further deterioration of the socioeconomic situation will likely trigger additional internal and cross-border displacement.