December 6, 2015
The Afghan authorities have reached to a new agreement with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) officials regarding the visit of Afghan citizens holding newly issued electronic passports, it has been reported.
The reported agreement between the Afghan and UAE officials comes months after restrictions were imposed on Afghan citizens visiting UAE.
Under the imposed restrictions, the Afghan citizens were obliged to verify their passports from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan before they could become eligible to obtain a UAE visa.
According to reports, the UAE officials have agreed to grant visas for the Afghan citizens once the Central Passport Department inserts the ‘Father Name’ of the passport holder in the electronic passports, even accepting the handwriting on the passports.
Ahmad Shekib Mostaghni, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA), told BBC Farsi that the verification process of the passports through MoFA was relatively lengthy as it was sent to the UAE embassy through the Consulate of the ministry.
He said the ministry was forced to intervene and hold talks with the UAE officials to resolve the issue and it was revealed by UAE officials that the specifications of the Afghan citizens were recorded by their First Name and Father Name in their bank of information but the newly issued electronic passports does not mention the Father Name of the passport holder and has been replaced by Family name.
Mostaghni further added that an agreement was reached to include the Father Name of the passport holder by handwriting and must be done by Central Passport Department in order to resolve the issue.
According to Mostaghni, the Central Passport Department will also include the Father Name of the passport holder by issuing new passports from next week.
Earlier it was reported that the visa restriction by UAE on Afghan citizens was imposed after discovering the citizens of other countries had obtained the Afghan electronic passports.
However, sources in UAE immigration have said they have also came across with cases where deported Afghan citizens had obtained new passports with different identification details.