ISLAMABAD - Information Minister Senator Pervaiz Rashid yesterday said that the international community as well as regional powers must contribute for peace and rehabilitation in Afghanistan.

He was addressing the concluding ceremony of a two-day conference on "Refugee Crisis and its Ramifications for Global and National Security," organised by South Asian Strategic Stability Institute(SASSI) University here.

He said that Pakistan has been hosting over three million Afghan refugees including 1.7 million undocumented for the last three decades, which is highest number in the world.

Rashid pointed out that the Western media neglected Afghan refugees and paid attention to only Middle East and other regions.

He said that developed countries should provide resources, opportunities and assistance to Afghanistan for peace and stability in region.

He said that huge number of Afghan refugees badly affected security and economic situation of Pakistan.

He said that the world community including regional States and especially international organisations should help Afghanistan to build economic opportunities, skills and development to the war threatened people.

He said thst Pakistan's fundamental priority is the early return of Afghan refugees and their reintegration in Afghan society, "for which we need to work closely with the govt of Afghanistan, UNHCR and other relevant players."

He said that Pakistan had maintained a policy of temporary protection with voluntary return as the preferred option, however, the goal of comprehensive repatriation remained elusive.

Pakistan had fulfilled its international responsibilities in good faith by allowing Afghan refugees to live in serenity on its  territory for more than three decades, he added.

He said that the whole world was experiencing refugee crisis more severe than anything it had seen in decades. Almost 39 million people had been forced to flee their homes due to conflicts or natural disasters, he added.

Rashid said people displaced inside their countries face the same hardships as refugees but lacked protection under international law.

He said that the world media had failed to cover an important issue, the arrival of Afghan refugees to Pakistan.

Pakistan has hosted one of the largest displaced populations in the world for a long time, he added.