Sunday, September 13, 2009, Ramadan-ul-Mubarak 22, 1430 A.H  
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 GEO Pakistan
 Visa denial to US citizens earns Pak bad name: Haqqani
 Updated at: 0153 PST,  Sunday, September 13, 2009
Visa denial to US citizens earns Pak bad name: Haqqani WASHINGTON: Pakistani envoy to United States Husain Haqqani has written a letter to Secretary Foreign Office and Director General ISI Ahmed Shuja Pasha on Saturday, Geo news reported.

According to sources, the letter pointed out events occurred with US citizens over denial of Pakistani visas to them on July 28.

The letter also said, denying Pakistani visas to US nationals besides harassing them, has adversely distorted Pakistan image and heavy costs will have to be paid in exchange of such events.

Meanwhile, the spokesman Pakistan Foreign Office (FO) has declined statement over the letter, saying that it is against country’s interest to discuss matters relating to national secrets.

Pakistan has blacklisted US media personalities and NGOs perceived to be critical of its national security objectives and policies.

The list includes Newsweek magazine’s photojournalist Kate Brooks and news channel CNN’s Pakistan correspondent Riza Sayah.

Punitive measures against them include denying a visa or cancelling an approved one, along with rigorous surveillance of those already in Pakistan.

This fact came to light from a letter Pakistan Ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani wrote on July 28 to top officials including Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir and Inter-Services Intelligence Director-General Ahmad Shuja Pasha.

In his letter, a copy of which was accessed by media, Haqqani asked the Pakistani authorities to share with his embassy the “black list” and enquired if it “contains reasons for putting a certain individual or organisation on it”.

Haqqani in his letter said, “The mission sometimes receives instructions from Islamabad to deny visas to US nationals working for important media and non-government organisations … the mission was (once) instructed to cancel an already issued visa.”

He added, “In the case of Kate Brooks we were informed that her visa should be revoked because she was on the black list … the embassy has not seen this list.
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