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Afghanistan emergency

Briefing notes

Afghanistan emergency

6 November 2001

According to various sources (including the Iranian Red Crescent Society) at least 1,000 Afghans are reportedly camping out in the open close to the Makaki camp, which the IRCS has set up inside Afghanistan's Nimroz province, not far from the border with Iran. They have not been allowed to enter the camp, which the IRCS says has already reached its capacity with as many as 6,000 Afghans.

UNHCR's representative in Iran has requested an urgent meeting with Iranian officials to discuss the situation and emphasize the need for camps at the so-called "zero point" between the two countries to accommodate new arrivals.

Camps inside Afghanistan close to the borders of Iran and Pakistan continue to cause considerable protection concerns, both for the inhabitants and for aid workers. The presence of armed fighters in or near the camps present an obvious danger to the displaced, including for young men facing forced recruitment by both the Taliban and the opposition Northern Alliance.

In another indication of the insecurity in the camps in Afghanistan, a 12-year-old boy was shot yesterday in Makaki. He was later brought out of the camp and taken to a hospital in nearby Zahedan, Iran, but died of his wounds this morning.