ISLAMABAD - Minister for States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) Shehryar Khan Afridi Sunday warned the prosper­ous world and the United Nations against developing a human crisis in Afghan refugee camps due to the prolonged lockdown situation in the wake of Coro­navirus outbreak.

The Minister made these remarks while speaking to media here at an Afghan camp after installing a walkthrough sanitation gate there.

The Minister said that he had raised funds for help­ing out the Afghan refugees stranded in camps due to the lockdown situation. He said that on his request, Prime Minister Imran Khan had already directed for­mation of a special relief package for Afghan refugees despite financial difficulties faced by the country.

“If Pakistan can roll out a special relief package for Afghan refugees, why can’t the developed nations come to the rescue of refugees. Afghan refugees mi­grated due to the Afghan war under the UN umbrel­la. Now it is responsibility of the UN and the world to help these refugees,” he said.

Shehryar Afridi said that Pakistan was doing its bit to help out refugees despite the fact that Pakistan was not a signatory of UN convention on refugees and its protocols.

The Minister said that he had written a letter to the Pakistan representative of United Nations refu­gee agency, UNHCR, to immediately divert funds to provide food to besieged Afghans in refugee camps.

“I would call upon the United Nations Secretary General and UN High commissioner on refugees to please send food rations to these Afghans in camps who are mostly daily-wagers. Failure is no option,” he said and added that though the UNHCR had formed a crisis management cell on his request but there was a need to turn measures into practical support.

He said that food items need to be sent to Afghan refugees on war-footings as the refugees were out of food since two weeks.