Ahmed Amjad Ali interacts with a Pakistani passenger at Dubai International Airport.
The repatriation process of stranded Pakistanis in Dubai and Northern Emirates is smoothly going on through the country’s national carrier as to-date approximately 7,100 passengers flew through 34 special flights from Dubai International Airport. There are 10 more special flights scheduled between May 26 to 31 for different cities of Pakistan.
This was stated by Ahmed Amjad Ali, Consul General of Pakistan in Dubai and Northern Emirates, while talking to the Gulf Today on Saturday.
Ahmed Amjad Ali interacts with Pakistani passengers at Dubai Airport.
Over 62,000 community members have been registered to seek repatriation as the regular flight operations have suspended since the COVID-19 pandemic declared in March earlier this year.
"The special flights operations have started since April 18 on the directive of the Government of Pakistan to repatriate desperate community members from the UAE including thousands stranded after lost jobs and others stuck after their visa expired. So far we have departed 34 special flights of Pakistan International Airline (PIA) from Dubai to various stations in Pakistan,” he said.
He further said that they have received schedule of 10 more special flights for repatriation of stranded community members from Dubai. "These 10 flights will be operated from May 26-31 for different cities of Pakistan from Dubai International Airport as the arrangements are being underway to inform concerned community members categorized on priority basis. We are hoping that around 2,500-3,000 more passengers will be accommodated on these 10 special flights,” he added.
Ahmed Amjad Ali with Pakistani passengers at Dubai Airport.
Amjad Ali refuted the media reports of local government’s offer to repatriate stranded Pakistanis by their “own carrier” and said that "these have been in the media for a long time as if government of Pakistan allowed them they will operate but everyone knows that our government is considering the facts especially the limited quarantine facilities on ground to allow more or extra flights. Government allows only special flights because of controlled quarantine facilities established on airports for passengers and control the spread of coronavirus COVID-19,” he said.
He further said that the special flights will be continue till the regular flight operation resumed which is yet to confirm.
“So far, 113,154 Pakistani nationals have been repatriated from different parts of the world. We thank all the governments of these countries for their cooperation in facilitating the repatriation of our nationals,” Foreign Office spokesperson Aisha Farooqui said.
In a video message, Ahmed Amjad Ali, Consul General of Pakistan in Dubai and Northern Emirates has said that the Dubai mission in collaboration with its partners has facilitated 110 special flights from Dubai to repatriate around 22,000 stranded Pakistan till date.
The Pakistan International Airline (PIA) flight with 227 passengers, mostly from Dubai and Northern Emirates, were lucky to get seat confirmation earlier and boarded the flight which left Dubai around 7pm local time.
"Tomorrow we will partially open airspace for international flights. This is being done specially to help our overseas workers who have suffered most in this pandemic but have shown great courage and made us proud," the prime minister said on Twitter.
Dubai Police (901) Call Centre received 481 emails, and 230 messages via "Chat" service. These included inquiring about the services provided by police, submitting reports and availing to the various services provided by the Centre.
MoHAP also noted that an additional 1,217 individuals had fully recovered from COVID-19, bringing the total number of recoveries to 527,519.
The Supreme Committee stressed that it continues to be mandatory for people attending events and activities to wear face masks and observe a minimum physical distancing of two metres.