(AhlulBayt News Agency) -The United Nations has praised Iran for generously hosting millions of violence-stricken asylum seekers and refugees, particularly those from neighboring Afghanistan.
"The leadership demonstrated by the Iranian government has been exemplary in hosting refugees and keeping borders open," said Sivanka Dhanapala said as quoted by AFP on Thursday.
"It's a story that's not told often enough,” he added.
Dhanapala highlighted the 2015 decree by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei ordering schools to take in all Afghan children, documented or not -- which led to building the equivalent of 15,000 new classrooms.
"We've also worked with the government on incorporating refugees into a government-sponsored health insurance scheme which is a ground-breaking development not just for Iran but globally for refugees," he said.
Iran has been sheltering a million registered Afghans for almost four decades, and NGOs estimate there are some two million more living under the radar.
That is the fourth-largest refugee population in the world, the UN says.