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HomeNewsGovernment has launched a nationwide operation to deport illegal foreign nationals

Government has launched a nationwide operation to deport illegal foreign nationals

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The Government of Pakistan has launched a nationwide operation to deport illegal foreign nationals, primarily Afghans, whose deadline to leave voluntarily has expired. This decision comes after the government had given undocumented immigrants a deadline to leave Pakistan by October 31 or face imprisonment and deportation. The government stated that more than 1.7 million Afghans are living illegally in the country.

The operation involves identifying and detaining foreign nationals without identity documents in “holding centres” before deporting them to their respective countries. These centres have been set up in Rawalpindi, Islamabad, and Attock. Additionally, thousands of houses belonging to illegal immigrants were demolished in the capital, and over 52,000 illegal residents were identified in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for a crackdown.

The government’s move has faced criticism from Afghanistan and other quarters. However, the Pakistani government has maintained that the operation is not aimed at any particular ethnic group. This is the first time in Pakistan’s history that the interior ministry has issued instructions to deport illegal foreigners under the Foreigners Act.

The Taliban government in Afghanistan has urged Pakistan to provide more time for undocumented Afghans to leave, as border posts have become congested with people returning to Afghanistan to avoid deportation.

As the mass exodus of Afghans continues, many are faced with uncertainty, with some choosing to stay in Pakistan due to concerns about their safety and livelihoods in Afghanistan. Pakistan’s policy of deportations has received support from some sections of the Pakistani population, citing the strain on infrastructure caused by a prolonged refugee presence.

The crackdown on illegal immigrants in Pakistan has raised concerns about the humanitarian impact and the need for more time for affected individuals to make arrangements for their departure with dignity.

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