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The Refugees Of Mazar-e Sharif

Thousands of Afghans have fled their homes amid a fierce Taliban offensive in the country's north. Many of those displaced have escaped to the northern province of Balkh, where they face a life of misery and squalor in makeshift refugee camps and shelters.


Homayra, a widow carrying her paralyzed child, lives in a makeshift refugee camp outside Mazar-e Sharif, Balkh Province. 
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Homayra, a widow carrying her paralyzed child, lives in a makeshift refugee camp outside Mazar-e Sharif, Balkh Province.

Faizia (left), Homayra’s mother-in-law, lost her husband when their home was bombed. She was blinded by a piece of shrapnel.
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Faizia (left), Homayra’s mother-in-law, lost her husband when their home was bombed. She was blinded by a piece of shrapnel.

Thousands of families from across northern Afghanistan have fled to Mazar-e Sharif, the provincial capital and a relative oasis of peace in the region.
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Thousands of families from across northern Afghanistan have fled to Mazar-e Sharif, the provincial capital and a relative oasis of peace in the region.

Abdul, one of the makeshift camp’s residents, fled from Faryab Province after fierce fighting between the Taliban and government forces.
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Abdul, one of the makeshift camp’s residents, fled from Faryab Province after fierce fighting between the Taliban and government forces.

The parents of 14-year-old Negina, from Sar-e Pol Province, were killed in a militant attack. She lives with her grandmother at the Balkh camp.
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The parents of 14-year-old Negina, from Sar-e Pol Province, were killed in a militant attack. She lives with her grandmother at the Balkh camp.

Mohammad Yusuf, a former soldier from Kunduz Province, has lived at the camp for several months. Kunduz has been the center of a major Taliban offensive. 
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Mohammad Yusuf, a former soldier from Kunduz Province, has lived at the camp for several months. Kunduz has been the center of a major Taliban offensive.

Khalid, 8, fled with his family from their home in Samangan Province. 
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Khalid, 8, fled with his family from their home in Samangan Province.

Some of the more fortunate displaced Afghans have taken jobs at brick kilns in Balkh to help squeeze out a living for themselves and their families.
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Some of the more fortunate displaced Afghans have taken jobs at brick kilns in Balkh to help squeeze out a living for themselves and their families.

Balkh has not been shielded from the violence. Agha Jan, an elderly farmer from Balkh’s Chimtal district, moved to the outskirts of Mazar-e Sharif three months ago. 
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Balkh has not been shielded from the violence. Agha Jan, an elderly farmer from Balkh’s Chimtal district, moved to the outskirts of Mazar-e Sharif three months ago. 

Asadullah, 7, lives in a mud-brick house with his family of eight. 
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Asadullah, 7, lives in a mud-brick house with his family of eight.

Hundreds of people from Balkh’s far-flung districts and villages have fled rising violence to come to the relative safety of Mazar-e Sharif.
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Hundreds of people from Balkh’s far-flung districts and villages have fled rising violence to come to the relative safety of Mazar-e Sharif.

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