Islamabad, Dubai agree on mechanism for prisoner data swap

Updated January 28, 2019

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Zulfikar Bukhari calls on Dubai Police Chief Maj Gen Abdullah Khalifa Al Mari to discuss the issue.— Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and HRD
Zulfikar Bukhari calls on Dubai Police Chief Maj Gen Abdullah Khalifa Al Mari to discuss the issue.— Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and HRD

Prime Minister's Special Adviser on Overseas Pakistanis Syed Zulfi Bukhari and Dubai police chief Maj Gen Abdullah Khalifa Al Mari in a meeting on Sunday decided to devise a mechanism to share prisoner data for swift repatriation.

The exchange of data is expected to help Islamabad make arrangements for repatriation of prisoners well before they are released, the Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development tweeted. There are some 2,600 Pakistanis imprisoned in the United Arab Emirates, according to the Justice Project Pakistan.

During the meeting in Dubai, both sides discussed the number and issues of Pakistani citizens jailed in the emirate, and the provision of facilities to prisoners.

They both agreed to form a joint committee that will pay special attention to the resolution of issues faced by Pakistani prisoners in Dubai, the ministry said in another series of tweets.

It was also decided that arrangements would be made for the repatriation of Pakistanis who have completed their jail terms in Dubai.

Out of total 8.8 million overseas Pakistanis, 11,803 are languishing in foreign jails, according to data available with the foreign ministry. There are some 2,937 Pakistanis jailed in Saudi Arabia, 1,842 in Greece, 582 in India, 177 in Afghanistan, 242 in China, 188 in Iran, and 226 in Malaysia.