Pakistan decides to register all foreign nationals, reveals Sheikh Rashid
- Says foreigners will be able to open bank accounts, start businesses and acquire SIM cards after registration
- Expresses concern that whereabouts of at least 40,000 to 50,000 illegal foreign nationals are unknown for the last 70 years
(Karachi) Pakistan has decided to register all foreign nationals living in the country, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said on Thursday.
Addressing a press conference in Islamabad, Rashid said that foreign nationals will be able to open bank accounts, start businesses and acquire SIM cards after registration.
He stated that the authorities have gathered several Afghan nationals, a part of approximately 70,000 illegal immigrants living in Pakistan. He added that the whereabouts of at least 40,000 to 50,000 illegal foreign nationals are still unknown for the last 70 years.
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To a question, the interior minister maintained that 4,000 to 5,000 Pakistanis are stranded at the Torkham border, who intended to go to Saudi Arabia via Afghanistan. "We will soon begin electronic border management at Chaman border," he said.
Regarding by-polls in Azad Kashmir, he said that Prime Minister Imran Khan will travel to the valley for the election campaign. He predicted that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf will win the Kashmir election and form the government in the region.
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About the menace of drugs, Rashid said: "It is a wrong perception that drugs are being smuggled from Pakistan to other countries.
"Being an interior minister, I confirm that drugs are being smuggled into the country from outside."
He said that a crackdown is being initiated on a large scale against the drug mafia.
He said the issue of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan will be decided by the federal cabinet in its next meeting.
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