Around 3,000 illegal Pakistani immigrants detained in inhumane conditions in Bosnia have refused assistance from the government of Pakistan to return home.
Special Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs Aman Rashid told the Senate Standing Committee on Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development that the Jungle Migrants Camp in Vucjak was located on the border with European Union (EU). These Pakistanis, mostly youngsters, are waiting for an opportunity to escape into EU in the hope of better jobs.
“Officials from the Pakistani mission in Bosnia have visited the detainees seven times and offered them a chance to be shifted to a detention centre with better facilities. But they declined the offer because the new camp is far from the border and minimises their chances of escaping into Europe,” he said.
Members of the committee had taken up the issue after some Pakistanis in the Jungle Migrants Camp sent messages to be rescued and repatriated.
Chairman of the committee Hilalur Rehman said he had watched disturbing videos of Pakistani immigrants locked up in the camp, and had been requesting the government to assist.
The official told the committee that governments deliberately created an unbearably inhospitable environment for migrants hoping that they would eventually return.
Immigrants also prefer miserable conditions hoping that someone would take notice of their conditions and release them, said Mr Rashid, adding the Pakistanis were not prisoners.Pakistanis mostly escape through Iran. The meeting was told that the border trade agreement between Iran and Pakistan was exploited. Under the agreement, settlements on both sides conduct trade.
“Most of the drug smuggling and human trafficking happen through that section of the border,” the special secretary said, explaining if the route was monitored illegal activities could be curbed significantly, Dawn reports.