Effective arrangements made for Pakistanis stranded in Afghanistan

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ISLAMABAD – Ambassador of Pakistan in Kabul and the Embassy of Pakistan have made effective arrangements for around 4,000 Pakistanis stranded in Afghanistan due to the closure of flights to Saudi Arabia, for their return to Torkham.

These Pakistanis are being provided decent place for temporary stay at Embassy and provided food, buses and cash grant for their return to Torkham and travel to their home towns in Pakistan.

These stranded Pakistanis have appreciated Embassy’s efforts to facilitate them in the foreign country.

Yesterday, first group of Pakistani nationals was repatriated by road.

Pakistani nationals stranded in the neighbouring country after Saudi Arabia last week announced to suspend flights to and from Ethiopia, UAE, Vietnam and Afghanistan over the fears of coronavirus spread.

According to the state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA), the ban came into effect on July 4. It will apply to all people whose has been in the four countries during the last 14 days.

However, the restrictions will not apply to citizens who will return before 11pm on Sunday from those countries.

The ban, according to the report, is based on “keenness of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s government on the safety of citizens wishing to travel abroad, and in light of the ongoing outbreak of Coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19) and the spread of a new mutated strain of the virus”.

“The Saudi Ministry of Interior calls upon citizens wishing to travel to the countries to which travel is permitted to be careful, stay away from areas where the virus is spreading, and follow up all precautionary measures, regardless of their destination,” read the SPA report.

It said that suspending citizens’ direct or indirect travel to the previously declared countries will continue.

Back in February this year, Saudi Arabia had suspended entry from 20 countries in order to slow the spread of the virus.

The banned countries included Egypt, UAE, Lebanon, Turkey, UK, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, US, Argentina, Brazil, Pakistan, India, Indonesia, Japan, Pakistan and South Africa.

Later in May, Saudi government lifted ban from 11 countries which include UAE, Germany, US, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, UK, Sweden, Switzerland, France and Japan.

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