Islamabad, Feb 20 (IANS) The families of Pakistani citizens who have not been evacuated from China amid the coronavirus outbreak have rejected a government briefing, while calling for their return, it was reported on Thursday.

A briefing on Wednesday was arranged on directions from the Islamabad High Court (IHC) to take the family members into confidence regarding why the Pakistan government had decided not to evacuate the citizens, reports Dawn news.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Overseas Pakistanis Syed Zulfiqar Bukhari told the participants at the briefing that the coronavirus situation in China has become complicated.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on NHS Zafar Mirza said he, the cabinet and the government could understand the anxiety of the families and had therefore decided to hold the briefing.

But the participants rejected the briefing and argued that even Afghanistan and Bangladesh had evacuated their citizens from China and asked why Pakistan decided not to do so.

One parent said: “You speak about the youth but do not care about it. If our children are not brought back in three days, we will hold a sit-in in front of the Chinese embassy. We will also lockdown your offices. Bring our children in Pakistan and keep them in a safe place.”

Some parents also said that they were willing to donate money to bring back their children.

“We just want our children to return, and we are not ready to listen to any other logic,” another parent said.

Almost 500 Pakistanis are studying in various universities of Wuhan, the Chinese city of 11 million people in Hubei province which is the epicentre of the outbreak.

The stranded students have been making appeals for their evacuation in video clips shared on social media platforms.




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