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Iran This map shows the geographic distribution of refugees in Iran. The map uses the proportions from the 2015 Amayesh registration applied to data from 2020

The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on this map do not imply official endorsement or acceptance by the United Nations.

Afghan Voluntary Repatriation (UNHCR assisted return) in 2021 JSON 
827
Last updated 31 Oct 2021
Source - UNHCR 
Out of the total number of repatriated refugees the majority are Afghans. See breakdown of nationalities below

Loading Number of Voluntary Repratriation per month

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  • Overview of Iran operation
    According to the latest data received from the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran in October 2020, on which consultations are ongoing, 800,000 refugees currently reside in Iran, out of which some 780,000 are indicated to be Afghans - one of the largest and most protracted refugee populations under UNHCR's mandate. In addition, 2.6 million undocumented Afghans and 600,000 Afghan passport holders also live in Iran, along with some 20,000 Iraqi refugees. 96% of refugees live in urban areas alongside the host community, while 4% live in refugee settlements.

    Within the framework of the Solutions Strategy for Afghan Refugees (SSAR), UNHCR supports the Government of Iran in implementing inclusive refugee policies – in Iran, refugees can go to school and follow the national curriculum, get free primary health care and access livelihoods opportunities. However, Iran is going through a challenging economic period as a result of the evolving international and regional relations. This situation is posing substantial strain of the ability of the Government to maintain their inclusive policies, while at the same time the needs and vulnerabilities of refugees are increasing.

    UNHCR facilitates voluntary repatriation for Afghan refugees who wish to return to their home country, once it is established that their return is voluntary, safe, dignified and durable. Since 2002, UNHCR Iran has supported nearly 1 million refugees to return to Afghanistan. Resettlement is one of the durable solutions to the plight of refugees and an essential element of international protection. However, the resettlement quota for refugees in Iran is at an all-time low.




    Refugees in Iran JSON 
    800,000
    Last updated 01 Oct 2020
    Source - Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran (GIRI) 
    Reported newly arrived Afghans in need of international protection (since 1 January 2021) JSON 
    26,370
    Last updated 19 Nov 2021
    Source - UNHCR 
    Iran demograpic breakdown
    Funding UNHCR Iran (2021)
    11900,00 US$
    Total appeal
    Date of Funding Data 1 November 2021 (26 days ago)
      Highlights
    UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, welcomed the generous contribution of EUR 1.5 million from the Government of Finland on 7 October 2021, in support of Afghan refugees in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Finland’s contribution will help UNHCR pre-position Core Relief Items, hygiene kits and tents along border areas, to help Afghans who are recently fleeing conflict and discrimination in their country. In 2021 alone, UNHCR is directly aware of some 18,000 Afghans who newly arrived in Iran using irregular routes, although the total number that have entered the country is likely to be significantly higher. Since the beginning of the year, over 660,000 persons were newly displaced within Afghanistan itself.
    07 Oct 2021
    Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, UNHCR's reception centers in Iran continue to be physically closed for in-person appointments for the time being. A page was created to provide useful and reliable information to individuals seeking support in Iran, including new arrivals.Please refer to UNHCR's help page for official information, including hotline numbers across the country. https://help.unhcr.org/iran/en/
    25 Aug 2021
    UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, has released yesterday a non-return advisory for Afghanistan, calling for a bar on forced returns of Afghan nationals, including asylum seekers who have had their claims rejected. UNHCR calls on States to halt forcible returns of Afghan nationals who have previously been determined not to be in need of international protection. States have a legal and moral responsibility to allow those fleeing Afghanistan to seek safety, and to not forcibly return refugees. UNHCR’s advisory against forced returns to Afghanistan remains in effect until security, rule of law and the human rights conditions improve enough in the country to allow for safe and dignified returns.
    17 Aug 2021
    UNHCR is extremely concerned by the rapid escalation of conflict in Afghanistan. Amid intensified clashes in Nimruz province in the country’s south-west, nearly two hundred Afghan refugees have been forced to flee to the Islamic Republic of Iran. It is estimated that since the beginning of the year nearly 400,000 Afghans have been internally displaced within the country – some 244,000 since May alone. UNHCR urges the Iranian authorities to keep the Milak border crossing open in light of the intensifying humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. Not doing so may put thousands of lives at risk. In cooperation with the Iran’s Bureau for Aliens and Foreign Immigrants’ Affairs (BAFIA), UNHCR has already provided immediate assistance to new arrivals, including food and water. Together with other humanitarian actors, UNHCR is prepared to provide urgent assistance and support reception arrangements – including emergency shelter, latrines and other core relief items.
    09 Aug 2021
    Contact Information

    Please contact the following focal points

    Type of Inquiry Contact
    Communications and External Relations Farha Bhoyroo
    bhoyroo@unhcr.org
    Donor Relations Alexandra Stenbock-Fermor
    stenbock@unhcr.org

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