PESHAWAR: Qaumi Watan Party and Awami National Party have condemned the violent incidents between locals and foreign students in Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan, and asked the federal government to take steps to ensure the protection of Pakistani students.

In their separate statements issued here on Saturday, QWP chairman Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao and ANP president Senator Aimal Wali Khan also asked the students to avoid going out of the hostels until the conditions were favourable.

Mr Sherpao said a huge number of students, including girls, belonging to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were studying in Kyrgyzstan. He expressed concern over the reports that the foreign students were subjected to mob violence in Kyrgyzstan, urging the government to take immediate steps to protect the Pakistani students.

Aftab Sherpao said the local people in Bishkek had attacked the hostels housing the foreign students leaving some of them injured. He said the students felt helpless and insecure, asking the Pakistan embassy in Bishkek to help them.

The QWP leader said other countries had started evacuating their citizens but the Pakistan embassy was dragging its feet to handle the situation. He said the incident had caused concern among the families of the students in Pakistan. He advised the students not to leave the hostels until the situation returned to normalcy, adding it was the responsibility of the government of Kyrgyzstan to protect the students.

Similarly, Aimal Wali also condemned the violence on the Pakistan students and asked the federal government to take appropriate steps for their protection.

He said the reports about the violence on Pakistani students had caused serious unrest among the people and said that it was duty of the Pakistani embassy staff to secure the lives of students.

Aimal Wali said the Kyrgyz government should also ensure the safety of foreign students. He said such incidents added to mistrust due to a few miscreants. He said the government of Kyrgyzstan should take steps to control the situation and establish peace and order.

Published in Dawn, May 19th, 2024

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