Families of hundreds of Pakistani students stranded in Ukraine after Russian invasion urge government to help bring them home
At a press conference on Friday evening, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the Pakistani embassy had been temporarily moved from Kyiv to Ternopil, on the border with Poland, to facilitate evacuations.
According to media reports, some 1,500 Pakistanis, including 500 students, have been stranded in Ukraine since Thursday’s Russian invasion.
Syed Waqar Abbas, a software engineering student at Kharkiv National University, is among the Ukrainian students awaiting consular assistance. His family in the southern port city of Karachi said on Saturday they remained concerned for his safety.
“My son is in Kharkiv which is being bombed. He lives near the border and this area is very dangerous,” said Shabana Bano Abbas, his mother. She told The Associated Press that her son had no resources to help him out.
“He just informed us that a train station near his home was bombed, how will my son get out of there?”, she said, asking the government to help stranded children to return .
Her sister Rubab accused the Pakistani authorities of being insensitive. “He has been trying to contact the Pakistan Embassy for two days, but the Embassy has given him no response.”
The Pakistani Embassy in Ukraine said in a tweet that it was helping stranded Pakistanis to evacuate, advising them to reach Ternopil so they could be transported to Poland. Pakistan’s national airline PIA said it was ready to repatriate Polish citizens by air.