Islamabad, Nov 6 (ANI): British High Commissioner to Pakistan- Adam Thomson- has denied any discriminatory treatment being meted out to Pakistanis visiting or residing in the United Kingdom.
"Several Pakistani media outlets have mistakenly alleged that the UK is targeting Pakistanis in a clampdown on illegal immigrants and is forcing deportation without any legal recourse following the renewal of the Pakistan-UK Memorandum of Understanding on Managed Migration... But these allegations are completely false. They are a reminder that one should not believe everything one reads in the press," The News quoted Thomson, as stating, in an open letter to the media.
"As I told Foreign Minister Qureshi on 4 November: The vast majority of migrants to the UK are law-abiding and want to abide by the conditions of their visa. We are keen to support them. However, it is perfectly reasonable not to tolerate those who abuse our visa system. Combating illegal migration is a top priority of the UK government. Illegal migration is after all illegal," the envoy said in his letter.
"We do not single out Pakistanis-we will not tolerate this abuse from any nationality. We will take action against all of those who are living in the UK illegally, including those who overstay, illegal entrants and those working without permission," he added.
Thomson said in his letter that the UK Border Agency would rather ask individuals with no right to remain in the UK "to leave voluntarily, but where they do not do so we are left with no choice but to seek to enforce their removal."
"The UK Border Agency is working hard to detect illegal migrants and return them to their home country. We are working closely with the Pakistan government to do this," he added.
Earlier, it was reported that the UKBA had arrested a number of illegal immigrants of Pakistani origin in different search operations, and fined their British Pakistani employers millions of rupees.
Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had met Thomson in Islamabad after the report found that Pakistani immigrants are being discriminated by the UKBA.
"The Foreign Minister strongly advised the British government against taking any precipitate actions against Pakistanis residing in the United Kingdom," a Pakistani Foreign Ministry statement had said. (ANI)