Imran hails philanthropic role played by overseas Pakistanis during pandemic.
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday said Pakistan would partially open its airspace for international flights by Sunday mainly to facilitate the overseas workers, Associated Press of Pakistan (APP) reported.
"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.
He welcomed the expatriates returning to their homes and assured that the government would facilitate them in every way.
The prime minister also appreciated the philanthropic role played by the overseas Pakistani community in helping their countrymen abroad during COVID-19 pandemic.
"There are many examples where the Pakistani community has been a source of inspiration, helping those around in need," he remarked.
The government has allowed resumption of international flight operations to and from all international airports in the country — except Gwadar and Turbat airports.
Aviation Division spokesman Abdul Sattar Khokhar said in a statement that the permission for international flight operations would be subject to restrictions and limitations as decided by the competent authority from time to time in the light of the current COVID-19 scenario and implementation of health protocols.
Additionally, cargo, special and diplomatic flights would continue to be authorised as per procedure in vogue, the spokesman said. Adherence to the relevant applicable standard operating procedures would be mandatory for all airline operators, he said.
The government on Wednesday announced a new policy for inbound passengers with a resolve to transport approximately 200,000 people within a month. The implementation of the new policy will start from Saturday, which the government said would bring significant enhancement in the capacity to bring back stranded Pakistanis from across the world.
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has issued a NOTAM (notice to airmen) after the government authorised international passenger and charter flights to and from all international airports of the country, except Gwadar and Turbat airports.
The notice to airmen said: "Government of Pakistan has authorised international passenger and charter flights to and from all international airports of Pakistan except Gwadar and Turbat airports in accordance with restrictions and limitations for scheduled international flight operations as approved by the competent authority. Slot timings as decided by the authority shall be strictly followed with sufficient separation between arrivals and departures to ensure compliance with health protocol. Cargo, special flights and diplomatic flights shall continue to be authorised as per procedure in-vogue. However, authorisations granted exclusively for outbound international passenger flight operations shall cease with effect from June 25.”
The NOTAM said all airlines and operators would be required to adhere to the applicable respective standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued from time to time.
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.
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.
“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.
"We have been informed deserving community members through phone to book their tickets for upcoming special flights of PIA and the tickets have been issuing through special counters set up at the Terminal 2, Dubai International Airport,” he said.
Lake Worth Fire Chief Ryan Arthur said two pilots were taken to hospital after ejecting off the plane on Sunday.
“We are finalising arrangements with the UAE to include their nationals and residents in our plans to open up to the fully vaccinated from other countries from 4 October.”
The events reflect confidence in UAE's efforts and success to contain the global epidemic crisis after reaching a high social level that allowed it to start a safe return to life with stringent measures to ensure the safety of its residents and visitors.