Trump immigration and Pakistanis

Published: January 25, 2017

President Trump is expected to sign new orders to block immigration to the US for applicants from six countries. Luckily, Pakistan is not expected to be on that list but it must be borne in mind that the South Asian region and particularly our country is and has been home to terrorist elements and is thus under watch.

Pakistan, considering its proximity to war-ridden Iraq and Afghanistan, and Iran, may soon be included on Trump’s ban list. Currently, countries undergoing consideration for a ban include: Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. Blanket bans are unjust and inhumane; the majority of persons fleeing their home countries do so for war strife or better economic and education opportunities.

How Trump will shape Pakistan-US ties

Often when immigrants enter a new country, they have renewed hope, and prove themselves as hardworking; helping to build their new societies. While the requirement of safety for one’s citizens is justified, the Department of Homeland Security and Trump and his cabinet should have better sense prevail and think more along humanitarian lines. The angle of racism throughout the Trump campaign is detrimental to not only the US but operates as a divisive force throughout the world, fuelling anger and hatred.

At this point, the attitude towards Pakistan remains uncertain. If immigration continues to allow Pakistanis to enter, Pakistanis can still probably expect nerve-wracking interviews with immigration officers and longer wait times for special security screenings at US airports, more agonising than what they enjoyed before.

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Furthermore, in the face of all of this melodrama, even if they are accepted into the country, some will feel like ‘second-class’ citizens. The realigning of powers and the new dynamics between Pakistan, China, India, Russia and the US paints a blurry picture at this time. We will have a more ostensible image once defence and trade talks come into the arena. For now, Pakistanis must remain wary and form a plan ‘B’ as an alternative to relocating to the US.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 26th, 2017.

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Reader Comments (19)

  • Toti calling
    Jan 26, 2017 - 10:43AM

    With terrorism on the increase and Muslims considered as the least flexible and not willing to accept secular and democratic way of life, it is not surprising that Trump has taken extreme views about Muslim immigration. Make no mistake. The fact that people have elected a man who talks openly about immigration means that most of people agree with him.
    In my opinion anybody wanting to move to other countries should be asked if they believe in secular way of living and laws. AS it is only secular countries are taking people without asking about the religious associations. We should appreciate that aspect and not misuse it to spread our way of life.Recommend

  • vinsin
    Jan 26, 2017 - 11:35AM

    What about TNT? So ban from Arab countries is justified but not from non-Muslims countries?
    As always Muslims want minorities to sacrifice for them.Recommend

  • Adil
    Jan 26, 2017 - 12:02PM

    It would be a blessing in disguise. Pakistan should also cancel visas for White American (who are mostly spies as evident from Raymond Davis case) and restrict their help in Afghanistan. Trump would only understand tit for tat language. We don’t want further mess by following his administration policies in the region.Recommend

    Jan 26, 2017 - 1:30PM

    Pakistanis can learn Mandarin and try moving to China – except that China does not accept immigrants to its closed society.Recommend

  • Singh
    Jan 26, 2017 - 1:45PM

    You r right to some extent.Recommend

  • Troubled
    Jan 26, 2017 - 2:17PM

    Your logic defies logic.Recommend

  • 007
    Jan 26, 2017 - 4:06PM

    Why are Pakistanis so desperate ? Their country, their rules. Recommend

  • Tera
    Jan 26, 2017 - 5:06PM

    Maybe President Trump forgot about including Pakistan.

    Will have to remind him to do so.Recommend

  • Prada
    Jan 26, 2017 - 6:04PM

    China is offering Green Cards. Pakistanis should line up.Recommend

  • Ali S
    Jan 26, 2017 - 7:14PM


    What kind of a delusional world do you live in? How many white Americans do you find in Pakistan or lining up outside Pakistani embassies worldwide? On the other hand, even the most hardline Pakistani will sell his soul in a heartbeat for an American green card or work visa. The bitter truth is that Pakistan is in no position whatsoever to dictate tit-for-tat terms to anyone without incurring a loss upon itself.Recommend

  • SNKN
    Jan 26, 2017 - 8:02PM

    Let Donald and Mickey live in walled Disneyland…. Mowgli will also not be accepted…mark my wordsRecommend

  • Sad but true
    Jan 26, 2017 - 8:43PM

    Plan B: China!Recommend

  • dubious
    Jan 26, 2017 - 10:45PM

    @Prada: China is offering Green Cards. Pakistanis should line up..
    While Pakistanis proclaim their love for China very few have ever visited and the only common language is English. The harsh reality is that China doesn’t like Muslims and they certainly haven’t made it easy for Pakistanis to visit – when I viewed the requirements it reminded me of how Iran treats American’s who want to visit – pretty harsh rules. Recommend

  • Waseem Mansha
    Jan 26, 2017 - 11:19PM

    Pakistan provide skilled immigrants to US and other developed countries. Being a Pakistani immigrant in Australia, I see more and more skilled Pakistanis moving over to US and Australia in last 5,6 years. I doubt Trump will ever ban us but I hope US does some more vetting of Muslims before allowing them in including Pakistanis. Over here in Australia, most locals can’t distinguish between Pakistanis and Indians hence we live and work without any problems. If US bans Pakistan, which won’t happen, Pakistani skilled workers can come to Australia instead of US. Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jan 26, 2017 - 11:28PM

    Trump is the only President in entire history of mankind who is fulfilling promises he uttered in his campaign and that too in a very short period of time.Recommend

  • Rex Minor
    Jan 27, 2017 - 6:38AM

    @Ch. Allah Daad:

    Fulflling promises? He has not fulfilled any promise to the 25 percent Americans who voted for him because of frustration with Obama administration, not yet at least. By simply issuing executive orders is not job done. A sham of a democracy, America is now struggling with, less than half the electorates participating in Elections. What he has achieved in one week is to break up the past 20 years cooperation with its neighbour Mexico on economy and securiy.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • Humza
    Jan 27, 2017 - 8:07AM

    @Waseem Mansha: Skilled immigrants and workers from Pakistan have been going to Western countries for over 6 decades so I don’t think anything will change. Pakistan is not included in the list of Muslim nations whose nationals are subject to Trump’s ban like Iran and others. Most Pakistanis abroad make a point of letting people know their heritage as being Pakistani. If someone were to confuse them with being a neighboring national, be it Indian, Iranian, Afghan or other, most Pakistanis would quickly correct the locals. Pakistanis , especially the professionals abroad have integrated themselves well and are generally well respected in the US. In a survey not long ago, Pakistani Americans were found to be among the most charitable of citizens in terms of giving. Trump has said very positive things about Pakistanis when he last spoke to the Prime Minister.Recommend

  • Waseem Mansha
    Jan 27, 2017 - 10:40AM

    Well more and more Pakistanis are going abroad these days. We have a huge population of Pakistanis who are living in EU but they aren’t skilled immigrants hence not very useful for those economies. Australia and US are two exceptions as they only allow students and skilled workers to come which is good. Over here in Australia, a lot of locals don’t really like Indians and most of them consider us Indian too. :) Recommend

  • Ashiq
    Jan 27, 2017 - 12:13PM

    @Waseem Mansha: “…a lot of locals don’t really like Indians and most of them consider us Indian too. :) ” Love your sense of humor brother. But on a more serious note, we should distance ourselves from Indians and wear Arab dress and speak arabic. Indians are shameless, they say openly they are from India.Recommend

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