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Monday, 18 June 2018

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 169 of 2018

1352hrs:

We must return to the topic of Mahmood Ahmed Musafir today. He is into Day 36 of his hunger strike outside Islamabad Press Club in Pakistan.

After the initial letter witten to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugee's representative in Pakistan on the 4th of June and a written reminder sent on the 11th of June, we received the following reply from them on the 14th of June:

Dear Mr. Tanveer,

We hereby confirm receipt of your application. We wish to inform that UNHCR’s mandate does not allow UNHCR in Pakistan to assist citizens of Pakistan unless they are displaced within their country due to conflict and the Government of Pakistan requests UNHCR and other UN agencies for assistance for these internally displaced persons.

Please note that under its mandate, UNHCR supports governments in providing protection to persons who have crossed international borders in order to seek asylum in a country that is not their country of origin.

For seeking protection as a refugee, a person needs to be outside his/her country of origin. A person who is still living in his/her country, such as a Pakistani national in Pakistan, cannot apply for asylum and be recognized as a refugee.

We, therefore, are unable to respond to your request for assistance inside Pakistan. You may, however, wish to contact the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) – a countrywide independent human rights body – to whom you could address your situation. The HRCP head office is located at Aiwan-i-Jamhoor, 107-Tipu Block New Garden Town, Lahore. Tel: + 92 42 35838341- 35864994 - 35865969 Fax: + 92 42 35883582. E-mail: hrcp@hrcp-web.org 

You may also wish to contact the HRCP’s Complaint Cell for seeking assistance on mobile number 0333-2006800 or landline number 042-35845959. You may also contact them directly on the Complaint Cell email address report@hrcp-web.org

Further details on HRCP’s offices can be found at http://hrcp-web.org/hrcpweb/about-hrcp/hrcp-offices/

Thank you for your understanding.


Yours sincerely,

UNHCR
Protection Unit
Country office Islamabad

End...



After consultation with Mahmood Ahmed Musafir, we are in the process of responding in turn to this letter.


Meanwhile, here's a valiant attempt at highlighting Mahmood's cause. Many thanks to the media team at Ab Tak.




Not to forget the other side of the LOC, here's a silent protest through the streets of Srinagar today in remembrance of the irreplaceable Shujaat Bukhari:





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