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Afghanistan - The Toughest Battle
Fahima's story
A widowed mother of four tells Al Jazeera what life is like as a refugee.
Last Modified: 15 May 2007 10:05 GMT

Fahima has three sons and a baby daughter
Decades of conflict means millions of Afghanis have been forced to flee both their homes and the country.

Up to a million people remain in neighbouring Iran where authorities recently began systematically sending Afghan refugees back.

For now Pakistan remains slightly more patient - 2.5 million refugees there are urged to register and offered financial incentives to return home.

Those who are not registered have very little to fall back on. Fahima is one of them and she tells Al Jazeera her story.

My name is Fahima. I am 28-years-old.

Fahima's sons work all day long
I have three sons. My newly born daughter's name is Parwana. Her father died when I was four months pregnant.

We were not allowed to register as refugees in Pakistan and when we came back to Afghanistan my husband got sick.

Being a widow with four or five kids - it is the same for hundreds of other refugees.

I have nothing to sell to pay off my debts.

A person once came and asked me to sell my child. I thought about it at first, but then decided not to.

The house has no doors
or windows
I am so fed up with life that if it was not for my kids I would commit suicide.

I gave birth to my daughter in this house. I did not have the money to go to the hospital. My sons were crying. There was no door, no place to hide from the view - there is no glass in my windows.

There is no work I can get. My sons work so we built this house. I wash my son's clothes all day - they get dirty working all day long.

We can only afford to buy bread with that money.

God should either feed us or let us die.

Source:
Al Jazeera
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