Gulf States Detain Pakistanis


In view of the seriousness of the problem, the Pakistan government is making efforts to check it in coordination with Iran, Turkey and Greece.

Analysts say the problem has been long-standing and has been on the increase in that there is no real estimation of how many Pakistanis, like other South Asians, leave their countries seeking greener pastures but are cheated by unscrupulous travel agents and job racketeers.

Minister of State for Interior Khusro Bakhtiar told the National Assembly Friday that 3,004 Pakistanis were languishing in 17 countries’ detention centers.

The country-wise details are: 393 Pakistanis were detained in Saudi Arabia, 22 in Qatar, 2,234 in United Arab Emirates (UAE), 30 in Poland, five in France, 13 in Slovakia, three in Singapore, 42 in Japan, 12 in Hong Kong, two in China, 213 in Malaysia, six in Egypt, 11 in Syria, two in Lebanon, five in India, three in Bahrain and eight in Kuwait.

Some of these countries, including the UAE and Malaysia, have from time to time declared amnesty asking illegal migrants and workers to declare themselves, or face arrest and punishment.

Some governments have made laws permitting such migrants to return after a gap of specified years. The list of those detained was as on Jan 20, the minister said.

Bakhtiar said the government was striving to check human trafficking. ‘The ministry is trying to send as many as people on government level,’ he added.

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