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pakistan
Sunday Mar 22 2020
By
Web Desk

Shehbaz Sharif returns to Pakistan amid coronavirus crisis

By
Web Desk

LONDON: PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif returned to Pakistan on Sunday after staying for four months in London with former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

After arrival at the Islamabad Airport, the PML-N president underwent screening for coronavirus as all the international passengers have been mandated to do so. 

Speaking to the media at the airport, Shehbaz said his brother's treatment would start now as his cardiologist had returned from his leave. “We are praying for his early recovery, he said.”

“We are working as one team under Nawaz’s leadership,” he said.

Shehbaz added that they would fight against this pandemic with the nation.

Earlier, before departing from London Shehbaz had said he was returning to Pakistan on instructions of his brother to be with the people of Pakistan at the time of crisis.

Read more: Shehbaz Sharif departs for Pakistan

Shehbaz announced on Saturday that he had taken the decision due to the deteriorating situation in Pakistan.

A Sharif family source said that Nawaz will undergo a cardiac intervention surgery next week. Shehbaz had wanted to be with his brother, however, Nawaz had directed him to be in Pakistan and use his expertise of dealing with the dengue and help deal with the corona crisis.

“I am returning to Pakistan on the direction of my leader Nawaz Sharif. I believe my services are needed in Pakistan at this time of crisis. Nawaz Sharif has asked me to help victims of the coronavirus and be among the masses during their time of need” Shehbaz tweeted on Saturday.

Responding to the development, Minister for Science Fawad Chaudhry said, "Shehbaz's return is a good step and hoped that other family members would also come back."

The former Punjab chief minister had been in London since November 20, 2019. Shehbaz had accompanied his brother to London last year for medical treatment, after the former prime minister was allowed to fly abroad.

Pictures of the PML-N president surfaced on social media in which he was seen embracing his mother and brother Nawaz at the Avenfield apartments in London as he prepared to leave for Islamabad.

PIA UK had confirmed the PML-N president's flight to Pakistan.

The airline said that usually, PIA flights do not operate on Saturdays. However, due to the coronavirus and the ensuing commotion, this weekend the PIA was operating flights. Pakistan on Saturday announced it was suspending international flights for two weeks owing to the coronavirus.

According to the government advisory shared by Moeed Yousuf, the special assistant to the premier on national security, the suspension will be effective from March 21 to April 4.