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US Imposes Sanctions On Pakistan, Warns To Deny Visa To Nationals

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The United States (US) has imposed sanctions on Pakistan and warned to deny visa to its nationals over the country’s ‘refusal’ to take back deportees and visa over-stayers.

Pakistan is among the 9 countries with visa-related sanctions which are mentioned in the Federal Register notification updated earlier this week.

Pakistan along with Ghana is the latest to join the list of countries with visa-related sanctions. Other countries include Guyana in 2001, the Gambia in 2016, Cambodia, Eritrea, Guinea, and Sierra Leone in 2017, Burma and Laos in 2018.

The US, however, said that consular operations will remain unchanged despite sanctions. “This is a bilateral issue of ongoing discussion between the US and Pakistani governments and we are not going to get into the specifics at this time,” a State Department spokesperson said.

Former Pakistani Ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani said that this would create problems for Pakistanis who want to travel to and from the US due to Pakistan government’s inaction.

“This measure will create hardship for Pakistanis who want or need to travel to the US and could have been avoided if Pakistani authorities had not ignored American requests to respect their legal requirements for deportation,” he said, according to the Khaleej Times.

In case these sanctions are implemented, it could affect thousands of visa applicants especially students since Pakistan enjoys the largest US-run Fulbright Program in the world.

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