Pakistan concludes verification of Afghan refugees

The government of Pakistan has concluded a countrywide refugee verification exercise that will result in  updating data of about 1.4 million registered Afghan refugees. The refugees will also be issued with smart identity cards that are valid till 30 June 2023. The UN refugee agency UNHCR commended the Pakistan government, stating that having smart identity cards will not only help refugees pursue services but also give them an opportunity to flag any protection issues for UNHCR to take action. The exercise was part of a 2019 plan to help refugee host countries and also assist former refugees who seek to return to Afghanistan. It is officially known as the documentation renewal and information verification exercise (DRIVE).