Special Flight Carrying 1st Batch of Pakistani Students from Bishkek Lands in Lahore

Sun May 19 2024
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LAHORE, Pakistan: A special flight carrying the first batch of Pakistani students from Kyrgyzstan’s capital Bishkek landed at the Allama Iqbal International Airport here late on Saturday after several foreigners were subjected to mob violence last night.

Kyrgyz police said they mobilized forces in the Central Asian country’s capital yesterday to quell violence in which hundreds of Kyrgyz men attacked buildings housing foreign students, including Pakistanis.

According to the Pakistani embassy in Bishkek, foreign students living in the Kyrgyz capital, including those from Pakistan, were attacked by local residents after their fight with Egyptian nationals on May 13.

Kyrgyz private media 24.kg said a spontaneous protest against foreigners that began last night in Bishkek ended this morning after police reached an agreement with the rioters and they dispersed a little later.

The report cited the Kyrgyz Ministry of Health as saying 29 people were injured in the violence. Meanwhile, the country’s foreign ministry said 14 foreigners had been released from hospitals after treatment.

The Pakistani embassy in Bishkek reported no deaths. “Furthermore, the Kygyz Ministry of Interior has also issued press releases that the situation is under control,” it said.

State-run Pakistan Television (PTV) reported that a special flight carrying the first batch of Pakistani students from Bishkek had arrived at Lahore airport.

Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi received the students. However, it was unclear how many students were on the plane, with state television putting 30, 140 and 180 in separate reports on X.

Interior minister Naqvi said that the students belonging to other cities will be provided transport facility. Pakistani students in Kyrgyzstan are children of the nation. The prime minister immediately took steps to protect Pakistani students after this incident, Naqvi said. He said other students would also be brought back with more flights scheduled for today (Sunday). He had earlier arrived at the airport to receive the students.

Furthermore, Pakistan’s Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar and Federal Minister on Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan Amir Muqam will depart for Bishkek to support Pakistani students today.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has directed Ishaq Dar and Amir Muqam to visit Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Both the ministers will depart for Bishkek today morning via a special aircraft.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister will hold meetings with senior government officials in Bishkek and ensure the provision of medical facilities to the injured students. They will also review matters related to the repatriation of Pakistani students.

The Prime Minister has been monitoring the situation throughout the day today and remained in contact with the Pakistani Ambassador in Bishkek.

Despite the situation being under control, it has been decided to send this delegation to Bishkek to ensure necessary cooperation and facilitation for Pakistani students.

According to Pakistan’s embassy in Bishkek, foreign students living in the Kyrgyz capital, including those from Pakistan, were attacked by locals in the aftermath of their brawl with Egyptian nationals on May 13.

According to the Kyrgyz health ministry, 29 people were injured in the violence. The country’s foreign ministry, meanwhile, said 14 foreigners were discharged from hospitals after treatment.

An earlier statement from the Prime Minister’s Office said PM Shehbaz ordered Amir Muqam to go to Bishkek immediately to provide assistance and support to Pakistani students.

“Amir Muqam will meet Pakistani students, listen to their problems and ensure that Pakistani students do not face any kind of difficulties in the current situation,” the Prime Minister said.

He added that the embassy should ensure support of the injured Pakistani students with the best treatment facilities. The embassy “will not leave the sons and daughters of Pakistan alone in difficult times”, PM Shehbaz said.

He further said that officials should ensure the immediate return of those students who wanted to return to Pakistan at the government’s expense.

PM Shehbaz earlier said his office was in touch with the Pakistani embassy and “constantly monitoring the situation”.

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