The UAE and Pakistan have agreed to work on an extradition programme to allow Pakistanis jailed in the Emirates for petty crimes to return home.
The UAE Ambassador to Pakistan, Hamad Al Zaabi, and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Imran Khan on Overseas Pakistanis, Zulfikar Bukhari, met to discuss the agreement over the weekend.
“The Pakistan Embassy in the UAE has completed the paperwork for various Pakistanis prisoners in UAE jails and soon the two sides will take practical steps on this issue,” said Abid Al Ghafoor, UAE Embassy official heading Media and Political affairs in Islamabad.
More than 1,200 Pakistanis are currently locked up in UAE jails for petty crimes including bounced cheques and unpaid bills, according to the Pakistan ambassador to the UAE, Moazzam Khan.
In June, the UAE government granted a royal pardon to 442 Pakistani inmates jailed in Dubai and the northern emirates for minor crimes. Ambassador Khan responded by thanking the UAE for the goodwill gesture and calling on members of the community to respect the country’s laws.
This week, Mr Al Zaabi said the UAE was keen to work with Pakistan at the “highest political level”.