Saudi Arabia recovers 12,000 fake Pakistani passports from Afghan nationals

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Islamabad [Pakistan], October 14: More than 12000 fake Pakistani passports have been recovered from Afghan nations by Saudi Arabian authorities.

This revelation has raised concerns about the performance of national institutions.

As per reports, Riyadh authorities have notified Islamabad about this matter, shedding light on the acquisition of these fraudulent passports by Afghan citizens through various passport centers operating within Pakistan, a Pakistan-based newspaper, reported.

Pakistan’s Ministry of Interior has in response formed a high-level committee comprising representatives from the Interior Ministry, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), and sensitive government agencies.

This committee’s primary responsibilities include identifying the individuals involved in the issuance of counterfeit passports and compiling a list of those implicated. Subsequent legal actions will be taken against these individuals in accordance with the country’s laws.

This development follows the government’s issuance of an ultimatum, instructing all illegal foreign residents in Pakistan to leave the country by the end of October. This directive has prompted the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) to express concerns regarding the profiling of Afghan nationals with a “narrow view of national security.”

On Wednesday, the Ministry of States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) assured that legally residing Afghan nationals in Pakistan would not face harassment or arrest.

The process of evacuating Afghan citizens living illegally in Pakistan began last week with 16 trucks transporting 20 families to the Torkham border. Once they fulfil the legal requirements, these 20 families, totalling 350 people, will be allowed to enter Afghanistan.

Islamabad has been a host to millions of refugees for decades, with a peak of up to five million Afghan refugees residing in Pakistan at one point. However, official records indicate a considerably lower count of individuals possessing valid refugee cards.

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