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21 Haunting Portraits Of Afghanistan's Refugee Children Living In The Slums Of Islamabad (PICTURES)

28/01/2014 17:17 GMT | Updated 03/02/2014 18:59 GMT

These beautiful images show the faces of refugee Afghan children living in slums on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan.

Huddled in threadbare headscarves and woolly hats, some clutch baby relatives, others, caked in dirt, simply weep.

But all are unflinching as they gaze into the lens of Associated Press photographer Muhammed Muheisen.

Muheisen told HuffPost UK: "Photographing those children taught me how to be stronger and adapt with difficulties.

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afghan refugee pakistan

Khalzarin Zirgul, six, holds her cousin, Zaman, three months

"Seeing the hard life of those refugees and the way they get along with and adapt and move on day by day, only makes you appreciate what you have."

The UN refugee agency estimates that some 1.6million registered Afghan refugees are currently being hosted by Pakistan.

Muheisen, who has also covered wars in Iraq and Syria, was named TIME magazine’s Best Wire Photographer of 2013.

He told the magazine: “All the children of the world share something in common, wherever they are from.

“An image of boys and girls skipping rope: that could happen anywhere in the world. Children are powerless and I always do my best to let me image be their voice and let my picture carry their voice to the outside world.”

Pakistan Refugees

By Sara C Nelson