Pakistan’s prime minister claims travel bans are increasing economic difficulties for developing nations
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday urged the World Health Organization to engage member states and convince them to remove COVID-related travel restrictions on Pakistan and other countries, claiming it increased difficulties for developing nations.
During a video conference with WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Khan said the travel restrictions imposed by various countries to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus were increasing economic difficulties for developing countries already struggling to mitigate the impact of the pandemic. He urged WHO to engage with member states to remove such restrictions, advising the development of a data-driven system of non-discriminatory travel rules.
In response, Adhanom said that WHO was working on virus-related travel guidelines to help define the international community’s travel policies.
According to a press release issued by the Prime Minister’s Office, Khan and Adhanom discussed Islamabad’s efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 in Pakistan. The prime minister informed the WHO chief of Islamabad’s progress in controlling COVID-19, with Adhanom appreciating the steps taken by the government to fight the pandemic.
The prime minister appreciated the support provided by WHO to Pakistan and other countries in the fight against COVID-19. He highlighted the country’s strategy of deploying scientific and data-driven interventions, as well as rapid upgrades of healthcare facilities, while maintaining a balance between lives and livelihoods, and claimed it had yielded positive results.
“WHO is glad to see that cases in Pakistan have been in decline since early June and we appreciate your strong surveillance efforts to fight the pandemic,” Adhanom posted on Twitter after the video conference.
Pakistan currently has 234,509 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, with 4,839 reported deaths and 134,957 recoveries. There are currently 94,713 active cases of COVID-19 in the country.