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UNHCR Global Appeal 1999 - Tajikistan


UNHCR Global Appeal 1999 - Tajikistan

1 December 1998

Basic Facts

What we do

Help reintegrate some 13,000 Tajik refugees who returned home in 1997 and 1998, primarily by reconstructing their houses; help repatriate and reintegrate some 5,000 Tajik refugees still in asylum countries in nearby Central Asian republics, Pakistan, the Islamic Republic of Iran and other CIS countries; and assist some 30,000 Tajik refugees who do not wish to repatriate in settling and integrating in Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan.

Who we help

Some 13,000 returnees in Tajikistan, some 15,000 Tajik refugees in Kyrgyzstan, some 15,000 in Turkmenistan and some 5,000 new returnees from other asylum countries.

Our requirements

US$ 3,746,465

Our offices

Kazakhstan: Almaty

Kyrgyzstan: Bishkek and Osh

Tajikistan: Dushanbe

Turkmenistan: Ashgabat

Uzbekistan: Tashkent and Termez

Our partners

Tajikistan: Agence d'Aide a la Cooperation Technique et au Development (ACTED), Counterpart Consortium (CC), German Agro Action (GAA), International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), International Organization for Migration (IOM), Save the Children (SCF/US), Shelter Now International (SNI), Refugee Children and Vulnerable Citizens (RCVC), UNICEF, UNDP, UNOPS, WFP.

Kyrgyzstan: Advisory Centre for Refugees (ACF), German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ), Kyrgyz Red Crescent Society (KRC), Netherlands Red Cross Society (NRC), UNDP, The World Bank.

Turkmenistan: International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), IOM, National Red Cross and Red Crescent Society (NRCS).

Kazakhstan: IOM, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Kazak Red Cross and Red Crescent Society (KRCDCS).

Uzbekistan: Counterpart Consortium (CC), IOM.


The General Peace Accord of June 1997 - which included the repatriation of the Tajik refugees - provided a framework for the peace process in Tajikistan. But the peace process is moving slowly, particularly concerning the demobilization and reintegration of former combatants into the government structure, amendments to the Constitution, and parliamentary elections. The working environment remains precarious and unstable. The socio-economic infrastructure has been largely destroyed during the civil war and its recovery, if any, has been very slow. Tajikistan needs continuing humanitarian and development assistance from the international community to foster peace and stability.

Tajik refugees and returnees

Some 5,000 Tajik refugees may return to Tajikistan from nearby Central Asian republics, Pakistan, Iran and republics in the CIS during 1999. Meanwhile, some 15,000 Tajik refugees in Kyrgyzstan and another 15,000 Tajik refugees in Turkmenistan have expressed their desire to opt for local settlement and integration. UNHCR will provide them with local settlement assistance which includes legal support to gain citizenship, repair of houses, health and education facilities and income-generation programmes.


UNHCR monitors the safe return and human rights of Tajik refugees in close collaboration with the Government of Tajikistan, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), sister United Nations agencies and NGOs. To enhance the protection of returnees in Tajikistan, UNHCR provides financial and technical support to build the capacities of the government's State Migration Service, judiciary, police and other law-enforcement bodies as well as the University of Tajikistan. Similar support is provided to the legal and administrative structures of the Governments of Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan in order to meet the protection needs of the refugees and to facilitate the acquisition of a new citizenship for those who will opt for local integration.

Women and Children

In 1999, UNHCR will be renewing its focus on the specific needs of women, children and adolescents, who comprise about 75 per cent of the returnee population. Female-headed households and children at risk will be the primary recipients of integration assistance. Urgent attention must be paid to the estimated 50,000 children left orphaned by the 1992 civil war, the destruction of the social infrastructure, the continued erosion of gender equality in access to education and employment, and the growing rate of illiteracy as a result of deprivation of education during displacement. UNHCR will address these issues by vigorously promoting education, including tolerance education, vocational skills training, and education in child rights and health. UNHCR also plans to help build a strong network of local NGOs and community-based organizations, including women's associations, that will offer peer counselling and help women and other persons at risk gain access to adult literacy classes, health education and credit schemes.


UNHCR's reintegration and rehabilitation activities in Tajikistan provide a link between emergency assistance and development. The largest reintegration activity will be the reconstruction of up to 1,000 destroyed houses. Other activities will include the rehabilitation of water supply systems, schools and clinics and income-generation. While voluntary repatriation is the preferred durable solution and will continue to be encouraged, there is a consensus among the Governments of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan that seeking another solution for a majority of Tajik refugees in Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan through local integration does not undermine or slow down the peace process in Tajikistan. In Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan, UNHCR assists development agencies and the Governments involved in creating and implementing programmes that address both the needs of refugees who have opted to settle locally and the needs of the communities in which they are settling.


Under the General Peace Accord, UNHCR is the lead agency for refugee return and integration. UNHCR staff in all five republics meet regularly with officials from the host Governments and with the agency's implementing partners. In Tajikistan, UNHCR coordinates with the Office of the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General (who is also the Head of the United Nations Mission of Observers in Tajikistan, UNMOT). UNHCR will facilitate the involvement of development agencies and host Governments in implementing programmes which address both refugee integration and the needs of the local communities.

Lessons learned

Sustainability of UNHCR's reintegration and rehabilitation programmes depends on: effective implementation of the 1997 General Peace Accord, in particular, the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of former combatants; constitutional amendments and parliamentary elections; and cooperation and coordination with development agencies linking initial reintegration and rehabilitation assistance to national development programmes. Extensive consultations with returnees, refugees, Governments of countries of origin and asylum are essential to finding and implementing durable solutions. This was demonstrated when the Kyrgyz and Turkmen Governments agreed to support local settlement of Tajik refugees, following a joint UNHCR/Government of Tajikistan mission to those countries.


The political climate is complex, unpredictable and volatile; security conditions are precarious. Killings, abductions and kidnappings are not uncommon. Indeed, in one particularly dramatic incident, four UNMOT staff members were shot and killed on 20 July 1998. Concerns about safety restrict staff movements in the country and thus slow down, or even force staff to suspend temporarily, project implementation.


The international community's humanitarian intervention in the early post-war phase prevented the situation in Tajikistan from further deteriorating and created conditions conducive to voluntary repatriation. The return of refugees helps sustain the momentum of the peace and reconciliation process; their successful reintegration is critical to stabilizing the country for future development activities. The proposed local settlement of Tajik refugees in Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan and their acquisition of new citizenship will also contribute to social and political stability in the region. UNHCR's reintegration and rehabilitation programmes are intended to fill a gap between the immediate needs of those returning home and resettling and the mid- to long-term development needs of all the populations in these countries.

Budget US$

This budget includes costs in Tajikistan, asylum countries and at Headquarters.

ActivitiesSpecial Programmes
Domestic Needs/Household Support120,000
Water Supply150,000
Shelter/Other Infrastructures1,000,000
Crop Production110,000
Legal Assistance/Protection160,000
Agency Operational Support200,000
Programme Delivery Costs*836,792
Administrative Support Costs309,673

* Includes costs for protection, monitoring and coordination.