Bishkek: Pakistani students narrate ordeal of fear, harassment; seek urgent evacuation

Bishkek: Pakistani students narrate ordeal of fear

Bishkek, MAY 18: Pakistani students in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, have shared their harrowing experiences following the violent clashes with a local mob on Friday night. They described their ordeal as one filled with pain, fear, and a lack of support from the Pakistani embassy.

Reports from students on the ground indicate a dire situation. Many expressed fear for their safety and urgently called for evacuation.

One student recounted a clash between local and foreign students on May 16. The next day, locals began attacking Pakistanis, evicting them from their hostels, apartments, and private residences.

“No foreigner was being spared; everyone was targeted,” he said. “The police are helpless against the locals who are roaming the streets and chasing Pakistani students.”

“We are scared, sitting inside our homes with lights off and windows shut,” he stated.

Shehryar Haider, a Pakistani student in Bishkek from Jatoi, appealed for help. “All the Pakistani students, including me, are literally imprisoned in our hostels. There are repeated attacks on hostels to kill people,” he insisted.

He added that the assailants are on a looting spree, and Pakistani female students are being harassed. “The Pakistani embassy is not helping us. The government should help us,” Haider pleaded.

Tehreem Nasir, a resident of Jhang, is also stuck in Bishkek with her classmates. They have locked themselves in their hostels. “Attacks are being carried out by mobs,” Tehreem said in a video message. Her parents, living in Mohalla Sultanwala in Jhang, are seriously worried.

Tehreem’s parents have appealed for the safe evacuation of Pakistani students. “The embassy should ensure immediate assistance. Three other female students from Jhang are also trapped in Bishkek,” her father, Rana Nasir, said. He added that they were repeatedly contacting the Pakistani embassy but could not get through.

Another student shared that Pakistani students in Bishkek are facing severe harassment and threats. “We are in a lot of trouble. No one is helping. We are in great danger. The students have been harassed, and threats are being made that we will not be spared. We do not know what will happen to us,” she said.

Despite reassurances from the government that the situation is under control, she vehemently disagreed. “The government is saying everything is normal, but the situation is not normal. No one is picking up the phone at the Pakistani embassy,” she said, pleading for their return to Pakistan. She recalled that locals clashed with Egyptian nationals, and many people entered their hostel, broke the door locks, and injured male students.

More than 50 students from Pakpattan are stuck in Bishkek due to the tensions in Kyrgyzstan. Among them is Dr. Waleed. His father said they had spoken to Waleed, who said he was hiding with other Pakistani students. “Our children are craving food and drink,” his father said.

The mother of another female student said everything was normal until 9 pm on Friday when suddenly a mob attacked. She added that the children spent the entire night in fear. “The children should be evacuated safely from Kyrgyzstan. Our daughter is currently hiding in a flat with three other girls,” the mother stressed.