Amnesty International reported EU governments “forcibly” sent back almost 10,000 Afghans back to their country in 2016 after having rejected their applications for asylum.
The stunning number of Afghans who have surged back to Afghanistan are at grave risk of torture, kidnapping, rape and death, according to the report.`
Amnesty International said number of rejected asylum seekers have nearly tripled in 2016, compared to 3,300 rejected in 2015.
Many of the rejected Afghans were detained and then deported from European countries and others “ostensibly voluntarily” returned to their homeland with financial help.
“European governments are forcing increasing numbers of asylum seekers back to the dangers from which they fled, in brazen violation of international law,” Amnesty said in their report.
The Amnesty report revealed that the forcibly returned Afghans include unaccompanied children and young adults who had arrived in Europe when they were children. Amnesty International interviewed some of these immigrants for the report, finding out that several of them were sent to parts of Afghanistan where they had never been to, putting them at grave risks and dangerous situation.
“These returns brazenly violate international law and must stop immediately. The same European countries that once pledged support for a better future for Afghans are now crushing their hopes and abandoning them to a country that has become even more dangerous since they fled,” said Horia Mosadiq, Amnesty International’s Afghanistan Researcher.
United Nations had reported recently that about 11,500 civilians were killed or injured in Afghanistan last year, one third of them being children.
Amnesty claimed that it had gathered testimonies from 18 Afghan men, women and children confirming having been sent back “forcibly” to Afghanistan.
A woman claimed, after having been deported from Norway with his family, that her husband was kidnapped and murdered after a few months they had returned to Afghanistan. Another rejection case a two-year-old child was wounded in an ISIS attack on a Shiite mosque in Kabul, in October.
Amnesty International urged the EU countries to halt further deportations until the situation in Afghanistan “permits returns to take place in safety and dignity”.