Pakistan Ensures Safe Evacuation Of Its Citizens from Yemen

National Yemen

Spokesperson Ms. Tasnim Aslam

Islamabad: Pakistan has reiterated its commitment to ensure safe and complete evacuation of all the stranded Pakistanis in Yemen due to deteriorating situation there, says media report.

“Two ships of Pakistan Navy had already reached Yemen while planes of Pakistan International Airline (PIA) are ready to fly to Yemen to evacuate the Pakistanis,” said Foreign Office Spokesperson Ms. Tasnim Aslam in weekly briefing of the Foreign Office here.

She said Pakistan’s embassy in Sanaa had been close and it is not functioning right now but a Crisis Management Cell established at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs here in Islamabad is working day and night to have close link to all those Pakistanis who are interested to home.

The Spokesperson said the Crisis Management Cell had been in close contact with Yemen authorities, PIA, Civil Aviation Authority, other departments of the government to coordinate for early and peaceful evacuation of all the Pakistanis from Yemen.

She said Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif had been personally supervising the whole operation and monitoring it day and night.

The Spokesperson said a Chinese ship had reached Aden last night despite the deteriorated situation and 186 Pakistanis had been embarked upon this ship who will be taken to Djibouti on Thursday night sometime.

A special aircraft will now fly to Djibouti Friday to coincide with the arrival of Chinese vessel so that these 186 Pakistanis could be brought back to Pakistan.

“Our ambassador in Ethiopia had been asked to set up a camp office for these Pakistanis who are reaching there through Chinese ship,” she added.

The Spokesperson said there are still 145 Pakistanis standard in Sana’a who did not join the first convey already left Sana’a headed by Pakistan’s ambassador to Yemen. She said efforts are being made for safe return of these Pakistanis.

Replying to a question about the death of some Pakistanis in Sana’a, he said so far there is no confirmation of death of any Pakistani there but the Foreign Office is in contact with the Yemeni authorities for confirmation in this regard.

Answering a question about the responsibility of Pakistani embassy in Yemen for early evacuation of the Pakistanis, the Spokesperson said its mission in Sana’a issued travel advisory many months ago and out of 3000 Pakistanis living in Yemen, about 2000 left Yemen on their own.

She said it is the responsibility of Pakistan’s mission and Foreign Office to ensure safety and security of the Pakistanis. She said many Pakistanis are settled there and did not want to leave Yemen which had delayed the evacuation of the Pakistani in time.

Answering a question about the demand of the Saudi Arabia during the talks with Pakistani delegation who visited Riyadh, the Spokesperson said state to state discussions could not be revealed in the press.

She, however said that national interest would remain the guiding principle of Pakistan’s policy and in this regard special session of the Parliament is being held on April 6.

She said the parliamentarians will discuss the Yemen situation and prepare the policy for the guidance of the government in accordance with the aspiration of the people of the country.

The Spokesperson said Pakistan had condemned the actions by non-state actors in Yemen to overthrow a legitimate government.

She said Prime Minister will visit some of the friendly countries to discuss the Yemen situation.

Replying to a question for not consulting with Iran on the Yemen situation, the Spokesperson said the conflict in Yemen is not between Saudi Arabia and Iran. She said Saudi Arabia contacted with Pakistan on the Yemen situation and Pakistan had engaged with Saudi Arabia in this regard.

She explained that Saudi Arabia had gone to Yemen on the request of legitimate government of Yemen who had been affected due to non-state actors. She said there is no need to consult Iran on this situation as Iran is not party to the Yemen crisis.

Replying to another question about summoning Pakistan’s ambassador to Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Spokesperson said Pakistan’s ambassador to Iran visited Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tehran last week and similarly Iran’s ambassador to Islamabad had close contact with Foreign Office and it is part of regular consultation between the two countries. (APP)