ISLAMABAD: The Embassy of Sweden on Thursday clarified that its mission in Islamabad has not stopped working but it is temporarily closed for external visitors.

“The Embassy of Sweden in Islamabad remains open but is temporarily closed for external visitors. The Migration Section is currently unable to handle any issues requiring a visit by applicants. The embassy cannot provide information on when migration activities at the Embassy can be resumed,” read a message posted on the embassy’s website on Thursday.

It further stated that the Embassy is not able to send documents to its consulates, Gerry’s, Sweden or home addresses.

The updated message was posted on its embassy following a meeting of Foreign Secretary Dr Asad Majeed Khan with Swedish Ambassador Henrik Persson, here on Thursday.

Earlier on April 5, 2023, the embassy through a message stated: “Due to the current security situation in Islamabad, the Embassy of Sweden is closed for visitors. The Migration Section is not, at the moment, able to handle requests of any kind.

Also we cannot send any documents to our consulates, Gerry’s, Sweden or your home address. We understand that this will cause inconvenience however, the safety of our applicants and staff members are of highest priority.”

According to Foreign Office spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch, Foreign Secretary Dr Asad Majeed Khan met Swedish Ambassador Henrik Persson on Thursday and the temporary closure of the Swedish Embassy for visitors was also discussed, besides other issues.

She said that the Swedish ambassador informed the foreign secretary that it was a transitory measure because of an unforeseen situation, which would be rectified soon. While making it clear that the embassy was not totally closed, he noted that Pakistani students desirous of applying for student visas were being directed to the Swedish Migration Agency.

She said that the foreign secretary told the ambassador that the notice displayed on the Swedish Embassy’s website was misleading as the security situation in Islamabad was normal. He also emphasised that the Government of Pakistan would continue to ensure the security of all diplomatic Missions in Islamabad.

According to the spokesperson, the foreign secretary also impressed upon the ambassador that Pakistani students should be facilitated to the maximum extent possible. The Ambassador agreed to resolve their issues in a quick and amicable manner, she added.

She stated that the two also discussed bilateral relations between Pakistan and Sweden and other issues of mutual interest.

The Foreign Secretary congratulated the Ambassador on the Swedish Presidency of the EU Council and thanked him for the support provided by the Swedish government in the wake of devastating floods last year.

The Ambassador shared his assessment on trade, economic and investment ties between the two countries and suggested ways and means to further promote them.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Tulukan Mairandi Apr 14, 2023 05:18pm
Nobody feels safe in Pakistan. In fact everyone is happy to ditch this sinking ship
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