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POST TIME: 8 November, 2019 00:00 00 AM
Govt to deport 11,000 ‘illegal’ foreigners
Special Correspondent, Dhaka

Govt to deport 11,000 ‘illegal’ foreigners

The government has decided to deport around 11,000 foreign nationals staying in Bangladesh illegally to their countries of origin. “Of these illegal foreigners, most are the citizens of African countries like Nigeria and Tanzania. All of them entered the country with working and business visas,” Liberation War affairs minister AKM Mozammel Haque said yesterday.

“Our intelligence agencies have identified the illegal foreigners who are overstaying after the expiry of their visas. Most of them are involved in different crimes including money laundering, drug business, and human trafficking and smuggling,” the minister told reporters after chairing a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Law and Order at the home ministry.

Haque said there was a hurdle in extraditing these foreigners as they did not have enough money to return to their home countries. “We cannot seek cooperation from their governments to deport them, as there are some foreigners from countries that do not have embassies in Dhaka,” he explained.

“That’s why we will ask the authorities concerned to allocate the required funds for extraditing the foreigners to their respective countries,” he added. On his part, home minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal said it was difficult to lodge the illegal foreigners in jail because many of them have completed their prison terms for various crimes. He also said that they have taken necessary measures to ensure that no Rohingya can get a Bangladeshi passport.

“We have already listed the Rohingyas with ID cards with biometric fingerprints. The cards would be integrated into the central server so that Rohingyas cannot make passports by using documents like national certificates,” he added.

Kamal said they have asked the metro rail authorities to take steps to ease traffic congestions at their construction sites.

The minister claimed that the country’s law and order is very good.

About the ongoing drive against drugs, the minister said they will show zero tolerance and that the border force has already taken steps to curb the entry of narcotics.

About the complaint of SP Harun, who was withdrawn from his duty station in Narayanganj, the home minister said an inquiry into the matter will be launched soon. “We can’t say anything before completion of the inquiry against the police officer,” he added.