KARACHI: Pakistan International Airline (PIA) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Air Marshal Arshad Malik on Saturday requested Washington’s envoy to Islamabad Paul Jones to assist the national flag-carrier in repatriating nationals stranded in the United States.
In a letter, Malik wrote, “Due to the Covid-19, flights operations around the world have been suspended and we would like the American Embassy to help us out in repatriating Pakistan nationals stranded in the US.”
“The American embassy can contact the relevant departments and help us in repatriating our citizens,” he wrote.
Pakistan is gradually evacuating its nationals from different countries after flight operations were halted due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Last week, Islamabad began repatriating Pakistanis from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which had earlier warned countries refusing to take back nationals that it could review labour ties. A special PIA flight brought back some 227 citizens.
In a related development, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi informed Pakistani diaspora in the US that the country has enhanced its capacity to repatriate nationals to 7,000 people every week.
Qureshi expressed confidence that this figure will tick up in the coming days.
“It is our utmost endeavour to bring back all the registered 60,000 stranded Pakistanis before Eid,” he said adding that 10,000 Pakistanis have already been brought back.