ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that, according to a Radio Pakistan report, the next step of repatriation of Pakistanis stranded abroad will begin from Tuesday.
FM Qureshi told a parliamentary committee overseeing the matter that 39,748 Pakistanis asked to return home to Pakistan, according to the report.
The report cited the foreign minister as saying 1,640 Pakistanis have been repatriated by 12 special flights so far. He said there will be greater effort to carry back stranded Pakistanis into this next step of flights.
The flights will run from today till 19 April, according to PIA.
A spokesperson for the PIA said relief flights would be operating for Manchester on April 17 and 18.
PIA flights PK-8852 and PK-8894 will leave for Seoul on April 17, while a special flight departs from Karachi to Jakarta on April 18.
The flight for April 17 will repatriate Pakistanis from Dubai, while the PIA will operate flight PK-784 from Toronto to Karachi on April 19.
Earlier PIA sources announced that two flights will operate today to bring back 400 Saudi Arabian pilgrims from Umrah.
Part of the flights will land in Multan while the other will land in Lahore at Allama Iqbal International Airport.
Another flight will fly to UAE and repatriate 410 Pakistani prisoners recently freed, with the flights landing in Faisalabad and Peshawar.
Relief flights will carry 270 stranded passengers to Islamabad from Thailand and Japan.
Two more flights on April 15 and 16 will carry back 360 Pakistani inmates from Oman.
Earlier the national airline had announced that it would be operating relief flights to bring back stranded Pakistanis. Those who wish to make a reservation can contact PIA offices, its website and call centers, while tickets can also be purchased from Pakistan, according to the available details.