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National

March 17, 2018

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30 Pakistanis adopting dual nationality daily since 2014

ISLAMABAD: After receiving death threats because of his principled stance on “protecting state’s interests in the bureaucracy,” a senior civil servant disheartened and feared for his life and left Pakistan in 2014.

He intended to return to his homeland last year but friends and relatives advised him not to even think of it. This civil servant who now lives in Canada told his story on the condition that his name would not be used because of certain concerns.

He is one of such 30 Pakistanis who have been adopting nationality of other countries a day since 2014, official figures/documents revealed, reflecting a rising trend of people fleeing the country. The number of Pakistanis who are adopting citizenship of other countries surged to nearly 43,000 in last four years - around three hundred times more than the 2012-13.

More than 70,000 Pakistanis sought political asylums abroad in past five years accordingly. If it is not enough then some 13,413 Pakistani nationals also applied for renunciation of Pakistani citizenship during this period. Contrary to aforementioned alarming trends, around 223 Pakistani nationals have been deported by various countries every day since 2009-10.

Official data/documents Geo News have exclusively accessed to show worrying trends about Pakistani citizens who were adopting dual nationality of 18 countries Islamabad has had the agreement with them. More than 42,383 Pakistanis informed Ministry of Interior that they have adopted other countries nationality from 2014 to 2017. Official data continued to reveal that 18,574 Pakistani nationals informed immigration authorities that they have adopted British citizenship in past four years. Some 11, 667 Pakistanis adopted nationality of Canada, official data revealed which continued to reveal that as many as 7,823 nationals adopted citizenship of the United States. More than 1,797 Pakistanis adopted citizenship of Australia, 451 of France, 435 of Ireland, 402 of Netherlands, 312 of Italy, 282 Switzerland, 264 Belgium, 139 New Zealand, 128 Sweden, 32 Finland, 30 Jordan, 23 Egypt, 19 of Syrian Arab Republic, 3 of Bahrain and 2 Pakistanis adopted citizenship of Iceland during this period. Around 300 of them were civil servants serving in various government departments.

Around 732,879 Pakistanis have been deported from some 134 countries since 2009. According to the official figures obtained by Geo News, the average deportation of Pakistanis during the nine-year period amounts to 223 per day. Around 80,000 in 2017, 78,285 in 2016, 116,185 in 2015, 78,409 in 2014, 60,000 in 2013; 17,000 in 2012; 15,667 in 2011; 15,231 in 2010; and 14,878 Pakistanis were deported in 2009.

Over 459,000, of the total figure, Pakistanis were deported from four brotherly countries, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Iran and Oman. Saudi Arabia deported more than 320,000 Pakistanis, during this period. Around 58,456 in 2017, 51, 456 in 2016, 61,000 in 2015, 45,678 in 2014, 60,000 in 2013; 17,000 in 2012; 15,667 in 2011; 15,231 in 2010; and 14,878 Pakistanis were deported in 2009.

When it comes to renunciation, some 2,354 Pakistani adopted citizenship of Germany, 1,087 of India, 881 of Norway, 827 of Spain, 559 of USA, 246 of UK, 187 Canada, 346 Netherlands, 302 of Hong Kong, 50 of China, 43 of South Korea, 30 of UAE, 70 of Zimbabwe, 35 of Indonesia, 44 of Japan, 39 of Kenya, 57 of Singapore, 2 of Saudi Arabia, 15 Ukraine and rest of them adopted citizenship of other countries in past three years. The figure is all set to increase further as cases of more than 12,000 Pakistanis, who wanted to renounce their nationality, are still pending with the office of Directorate General of Immigration and Passports (DGIP), Islamabad.

As many as 1,928 Pakistani nationals relinquished their citizenship in 2012, 2,307 in 2013, 1,715 in 2014, 4,017 in 2015, 2,898 in 2016 and rest of them gave up their nationality in 2017, official documents revealed. Some 4,887 Pakistanis adopted citizenship of Germany in last five years - around 36 percent of total number of Pakistanis who gave up their nationality during this period.

Pakistani nationals who intend to acquire or has acquired nationality of another country with which Pakistan has no dual nationality arrangement is bound to renounce Pakistan nationality under section 14-A of Pakistan citizenship Act, 1951.

Pakistani citizens applied for asylum in various countries included 8,974 in Greece, 277 in United States, 800 in Indonesia, 3,000 in Malaysia, 1,489 in Honk Kong, 50 in Brazil while approximately 55,000 applications of asylum are also pending in South Africa and Germany during this period.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a written reply informed Parliament weeks ago that those European countries, Australia and New Zealand do not share information regarding foreign prisoners, illegal migrants and asylum seekers due to strict privacy laws.

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