Pakistan PM approves on arrival transit visas for Afghans

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif has approved a new on arrival visa policy for Afghan nationals going abroad via Pakistan, local media reported on Saturday.

Salman Sufi, head of the Prime Minister’s Strategic Reforms Initiatives, said that under the new policy a transit visa of 30 days would be issued within 24 hours by the Pakistan government to Afghan nationals, Dawn newspaper reported.

The official said that upon the receipt of such a request from the host embassy in Pakistan, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) would immediately process the request for transit visa of up to 30 days.

“Thereafter, upon the receipt of the immigration approval, embassy of the host country will intimate (MoFA) and the ministry will forward the case to the interior ministry for clearance within 24 hours,” he said.

Sharif meanwhile said on Sunday the new Afghan visa policy is part of the Pakistani government’s efforts to continue helping “our Afghan brothers in their hour of need.”

“Grant of transit visa will help them complete paperwork for onward travel. International community should also lend a helping hand to people of Afghanistan,” Sharif said on Twitter.