APPROVED FOR RELEASE DATE: 7
Afghanistan Situation Report
MASOOD APPEALS FOR HELP
The Panjsherf leader claims Ihe valley is facing starvation.
ZIA RAISES POSSIBILITY OF NEW TALKS 3
Zia reportedly has called for an international conference on Afghanistan.
AFGHAN REFUGEES: LONG-TERM BURDEN FOR PAKISTAN 6
Tho Afghan refugees willroblemincreasing complexityrowing threat to Pakistan's internal stability throughout the .
This document is prepared weekly by the Office of Near East/South Asia and the Office of Soviet Analysis. Questions or comments on tbe issues raised in the publication should be directed to T
MASOOD APPEALS FOR HELP
Panjshori Insurgent loader Masood has appealed to the world community for aid to avert starvation in tho Panjaher Valley. He claims that the most recant Soviet offensive there destroyed fanes and food supplies, forcing the inhabitants to seek refuge elsewhere. |
Comment: The two Soviet offensives in tha valley this yenr diddamage, |
ln theMasood hae sometimes
exaggerated his problems in an effort to obtain more help. Nonetheless. it would be extremely difficult io send food aid to the valley.
Inirect appeal, Maaood bypassed the leadership of thanlami to whleh he helcema.
that insurgent commanders ere ofshawar exiles gaining prestige at the expense
ZIA RAISES POSSIBILITY OP NEW TALKS
Up lo now Pakistan baa refused to deal directlj vlth the Babrnk rt-glmn. Zla'a romarks, ii" reported correctly, Imply ti'.-position might bo changing,onference could bo held by the indirect motl.ods used in UN discussions. This is also the firsta is known to havo proposed that the resistance movement bntatus equal to the various nations involved in the Afghan problem or that it be included directly In talks. The unanswered question, howevor, is who might speak for the divided resistance groups.
AFGHAN REFUGEES; LONG-TERM BURDEN FOR PAKISTAN
Demographic Arithmetic. Wo expect that tho Afghan refugees willroblea of increasing complexityrowing threst to Pakistan's internal stability throughout. We believe thet tbe sheer size of the refugeelargest In the world--will strain the government's ability to acconsodaie the refugees as well as its ability to limit their threat tostability. | |
The US Census Bureau estimated that thereillion refugees inas olased on the numbers of refugees registered by the Unitod Nations High Commissioner for Refugees9 and the endnet gains0nd the estimated number of births and deaths occurring in the refugee population. The Census Bureau projects that the refugee population willillion5illionven assuming that no additional refugees will arrive or be repatriated*
While US and International observers agree that Pakistan's international prestige has been enhanced by its acceptance of the refugees and by itsto share Its limited rosources to care for them, the economic costs have been high. The government estimates its assistance costsnd above aid provided by international relief organizations for
"Estimates by various organizations on tho sixn of the refugee population rangedillionillion during spring andhe Pakistani Government estimate, based on renewed efforta by Pakistani relief officials to count camp populations,illion as oflthough officials say that net Inflow wasrickle" during the first halfhey still expect an Increaseillion by the end of tho year.
'| UN agencies lft
2 agreed to provide food rations tor illion rltuiees rather than
| We believe that the US Census Bureau estimate,
baaed on both UN camp registrations and documented demographic growthis reasonable and can be used with some degree of
considerably lower than the government's official estimato--on theifference between Pakistani
and Western attieiates to inclusionassistance estimate of indirect costs such as road end railway repair, law enforcement, reclamation of devastatedand grazing areas, and reimbursement for damage to privato properties
Host refugees are Pushtun tribesmen who, according to local and nationalsources, have boon received as brothers by the PakisLani Pushtuns of the North-West Frontier Province and Baluchistan, and as Muslim brothers In need by all Pakistanis. Dospfte these ethnic ties, government aulhoiitiee say that preservation of public order is their groatost concern in the volatile tribal areas where nearly all refugees reside. I
ant June gpre man a
hundred were lei Hod in sectarian fighting in Kurram Agency, which also Involved Afghan refugees. Officials fear that even minor disagreements between refugees and the local population or between rival refugee groups could leadattern of increasingly serious incidents
which is concerned that unrestoviet-sponsoreo. agents, has adopted preventive measures:
camps have been deliberately situated away from more populous centera.
--Refugee areas are rigorously policed.
--Grazing, water, and land rights have been carefully defined between locals and rofugees.
--Whore roaentmont toward refugee aid has boon vocal, local inhabitants have been granted aid commensurate with that given to the refugees, orhas been made by the government to the aggrieved party, f
Strategic Risks and Pakistani Apprehensions
The support of the insurgency in Afghanistan by groups using refugeein Pakistanationale for Soviet incursions into theis growing concern among thoughtful Pak-
istanis, who draw an analogy with tha Palestinians that these well-armed groups couldroublesome security problem in the borderlands. Dispersingcamps to other locations away from the border would dilute their status as an attractive nuisance target for the Soviets, but those refugees tcost actively engaged in cross-border activities would probably resist leaving the frontier area, j j
Pakistani officials fear the Soviet use of Afghan refugees and Pakistani Pushtun tribesmen for subversive activities in the politically volatileThey are apprehensive that should the refugees lose faith in an eventual return to their homelands, they may well become active in tribal politics, rekindling agitation for an autonoeious Pushtunistan on Pakistan territory. Their presence in large numbers in the borderlands would cause those demands toerious threat to the government's efforts to integrate the tribal areas into the political life of Pakistan, f
In our opinion, Pakistan's peacekeeping efforts in the borderlands have been made more difficult by the introduction of more numerous and sophisticatedamong refugee groups and local tribesmen in the wake of the AfghanWarfare isport among the Pushtun.ribal society chat traditionally settles disputes with guns, intertribal clashes are likely to escalate quickly out of control. On anotherisquieting factor for the Pakistani military, in any future confrontation with armed Pushtun tribesmen, is the experience and confidence the Pushtun have gained in combatingsuperior Soviet forces.
We believe that the refugees arerolonged or indefinite stay in Pakistan, despite the effort of the government to characterize themhe refugees are unlikely to return to Afghanistan permanently as longoviet-backed government is in power. Even if conditions Inbecome conducive for repatriation, it is unlikely that all of the refugees will return, particularly the landless laborers among them. The longer their sojourn in Pakistan, the more likelyarger number will take up permanent residence in Pakistan and strain the overburdened Pakistan economy.