Pakistan forms fact-finding committee to probe Bishkek incidents

Deputy PM Ishaq Dar says over 3,000 Pakistanis have returned from Kyrgyzstan after mob attacks

Web Desk
Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar speaks during a presser in Islamabad on May 22, 2024, in this still taken from a video. — YouTube/Geo News Live 

ISLAMABAD: Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar Wednesday announced forming an inquiry committee to investigate the mob violence in Bishkek during which Pakistani nationals, including students studying in Kyrgyzstan's capital, were attacked.

The committee will be led by Additional Secretary Administration Muhammad Saleem and will probe into the developments pertaining to the violence that ensued in Bishkek last week.

It has been directed to complete its report within two weeks.

At least five Pakistani students were reported injured in the violence which was triggered following a harassment incident on May 13 involving Egyptian students in the Kyrgyz capital.

A day earlier, Dar visited Bishkek to discuss the “concerns” of Pakistani students who among other foreign nationals suffered mob attacks by locals last week.

The visit came as Pakistan ramped up evacuations of its students from Bishkek with over 3,000 pupils returning to the country so far.

After reaching Bishkek, FM Dar held a detailed meeting with his Kyrgyz counterpart Kulubaev Zheenbek Moldokanovich.

Dar, during the presser, said that he had discussed the students’ issue with his Kyrgyz counterpart in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana, where they were visiting for a separate meeting. “The Kyrgyz FM had assured me that there is nothing to worry about.”

During his time in Bishkek, the deputy premier also visited the hospital where injured Pakistani students were being treated.

He informed media in Islamabad that the Kyrgyz president also assured him that he would not tolerate such an incident and that those involved in attacks have been arrested.

Dar was informed by Pakistani Ambassador Hassan Zaigham that at least 1,100 workers arrived in Kyrgyzstan through agents and continue to live there without visas. He added that these workers are employed in different factories.

Dar requested the Kyrgyz government to issue visas to the workers instead of deporting them and was assured by Kyrgyzstan’s deputy prime minister regarding the issuance of visas.

The deputy premier added that the students are scared following the riots in the Kyrgyz capital.

“Students who are in their final year [of studies] should come back after completing their degree,” Dar said.