ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan was told on Monday that the Chinese couple, which was abducted from Quetta last month and was later allegedly killed, belonged to a group of Chinese people who had obtained a business visa for Pakistan but were engaged in ‘preaching.’
Lee Zing Yang, 24, and Meng Li Si, 26, were abducted from Jinnah Town of Balochistan’s provincial capital on May 24. Later, the Islamic State terrorist group claimed that it had killed the abductees. However, the claim could not be verified as yet.
In a meeting held at the Interior Ministry to review issuance of visas to the Chinese and registration of international nongovernmental organisations (INGOs), Nisar was told the couple was part of a group of Chinese citizens who obtained business visa from the Pakistani Embassy in Beijing.
However, instead of carrying out any business activity they went to Quetta where they were engaged in evangelical activities in the garb of learning Urdu language from a Korean national, Juan Won Seo, who owns the ARK Info Tech Institute, the minister was told.
Expressing deep concern over the unfortunate incident, Nisar said there was a need to review the process of issuance of visas to the Chinese nationals coming to Pakistan for various projects and simultaneously to maintain a databank of the Chinese nationals present in various parts of the country.
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“This databank, to be prepared by NADRA [National Database Registration Authority], should be shared with all security agencies,” Nisar told the participants who included secretary interior, advocate general, DG IMPASS, NADRA deputy chairman and other senior officers.
The minister said it was highly unfortunate that a misuse of the terms of business visa contributed to the unfortunate incident of abduction and subsequent murder. He directed secretary interior to investigate the matter and ensure that such misuse does not occur in the future.
Taking serious note of laxity often shown by the Pakistani missions abroad during grant of visas, the minister said all Pakistani missions are bound to undertake proper scrutiny of visa application forms and must get all necessary details before exercising their power of issuance of visas to foreign nationals.
He directed that the Ministry of Foreign Affair be taken onboard and their input be included while formulating new visa policy guidelines.
The minister, however, observed that ensuring security of foreign nationals was a shared responsibility.
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“Where the government makes every effort to provide security to foreigners, the visiting foreign nationals are equally bound to abide by the terms and conditions of their visas and inform local authorities about their movements and activities in view of the security requirements, if any,” he said.
The meeting also reviewed progress in registration of INGOs under the new policy framework devised by the ministry. It was informed that so far 66 INGOs had been formally registered.
Nisar directed the ministry to expedite the process of obtaining required information from the INGOs so that decision could be taken about their registration. He directed that the process of granting formal registration to INGOs should be completed by end of July.