Iranian border security forces have handed over 2,666 illegal immigrants to Pakistani officials during the past four months. More than a thousand of these however are Afghan nationals.
These fresh figures point out the worsening situation with regards to human trafficking. Last year, Iranian forces handed over 8,732 illegal immigrants to Pakistani officials at the Taftan border, a township on the Pakistan-Iran border.
“High-profile people are involved in this lucrative business. Agents backed by powerful elements make false claims about economic opportunities in Europe in order to attract the youth,” Balochistan Home Secretary Akbar Hussain Durrani said.
“A task force has been set up to curb human trafficking in Balochistan. It comprises personnel of the Balochistan Levies, Coast Guard, Frontier Corps, police and the Federal Investigation Agency,” he said, adding, “The task force is working effectively in the province to prevent illegal immigration and to book agents.”
Pakistani security personnel too have rounded up around 4,000 illegal immigrants over the couple of years who had no relevant travel documents and intended to cross the border. “An overwhelming majority of these immigrants belonged to central Punjab,” Durani said.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 25th, 2011.