KARACHI: A US official on Wednesday denied a report claiming Donald Trump has signed an order allowing visa-free travel for Pakistanis.
A website, USA Television, published an article claiming the US president had “signed a visa-free travel policy” for residents of Pakistan to “strengthen trade” .
“The United States President Donald Trump has signed an executive order to allow all Pakistan nationals travel to the United States without visas,” the report stated.
“The new order, serving as a change in visa policy for Pakistanis traveling to the United States, would permit them stay in the US for a maximum period of 180 days for Tourism or Business purposes only. Stay over 180 days would therefore require a visa,” it added.
Trump says this measure is to strengthen trade between the United States and Pakistan, the report upheld.
US forced to deny ‘no visa policy’ report after it goes viral
However, speaking to The Express Tribune, US Embassy spokesperson Fleur Cowan said, “This story is fake. If any Pakistani citizens are interested in travelling to the US, they can visit our website.”
USA Television also posted articles claiming Trump had also implemented visa-free travel policies for citizens of Ethiopia, Haiti, Kenya, Jamaica, Malawi, Mauritius, Papua New Guinea, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Uganda, Ukraine, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and the entire Caribbean.
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In August last year, the US Consulate in Karachi was forced into refuting reports which claimed Pakistan was granted a visa waiver for entry into the United States. The US consulate had to tweet the clarification after an old story from a satirical website resurfaced and went viral. The story, which was picked up by Online news agency and numerous other Pakistani newspapers, falsely claimed the US Department of State on Sunday updated the number of qualified Visa Waiver Program (VWP) designated countries from 38 to 39.