Pakistani passengers at Dubai International Airport. File
Adviser to the premier Moeed Yusuf has clarified that the government has only allowed outbound international flights operations to resume.
He said that he saw some media reports that the government had allowed both inbound as well as outbound flight operations to resume, which he said were false.
"We analysed whether COVID-19 will spread if we let outbound flights come in. The answer is no, because their crews won't come here. We also realised that the Civil Aviation Authority was suffering financially. It needs air traffic to sustain itself," he said while explaining why the government took the decision.
Yusuf said that 2,000 Pakistanis will be repatriated daily from June 1 to 10. He said, however, that the focus would remain on the Gulf states because a lot of Pakistanis worked there as labourers and they could not afford to stay there even one day after being laid off.
"From June 1 to 10, about 8,000 Pakistanis from the UAE and 4,000 from Saudi Arabia will be repatriated. Our embassies and consulates there are facing a lot of pressure and the staff is trying their best,” he said adding that a new policy would soon be announced for overseas Pakistanis.
Meanwhile, the number of people who have recovered from the coronavirus in Pakistan has topped 25,000 after 1,140 additional recoveries were reported in the last 24 hours.
According to the government's COVID-19 portal, the total number of people who have recovered from the virus has risen to 25,271.
After the medical check-up and the coronavirus test, the passengers will be allowed to go their homes, instead of the quarantine centre, if they do not show any COVID-19 symptoms.
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 Civil Aviation Authority announced in Pakistan earlier on Saturday that international and domestic flights to the country will remain suspended till April 30, Dawn news reported.
“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.
Police inspector Rajiv Singh said that last week the gang stole 16 idols from the 300-year-old temple of Lord Balaji — an incarnation of the Hindu god Vishnu — police said.
Sheikh Mohamed accepted the condolences of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of the Republic of Turkey; Sadyr Japarov, President of the Kyrgyz Republic; and Julius Maada Bio, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, over the passing of the late Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed said on Twitter, “With his enduring wisdom and generosity, my brother Khalifa Bin Zayed was the heart of our family and the guardian of our nation."