"This is clear and blatant discrimination"
Pakistan has slammed the UK government for keeping them on their ‘red’ travel list but deciding to move India to the ‘amber’ list.
India, Bahrain, Qatar and the UAE moved down to the UK’s amber list on Sunday, August 8, 2021.
Now, fully vaccinated travellers from India can quarantine at home rather than at a hotel.
However, travellers from red list countries can only enter the UK if they are British or Irish citizens, or have residency rights in the UK.
Pakistan and India were placed on the UK’s red list on April 2, 2021, and April 19, 2021, respectively.
Now, the UK has decided to move India to its amber list, and Pakistan is not happy.
Pakistan’s Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari called out the UK government for keeping them on their travel red list.
According to Mazari, moving India to the amber list but not Pakistan is discriminatory.
Shireen Mazari took to Twitter to express her outrage at the UK government’s decision.
How can UK govt rationally place India on Amber list while keeping Pakistan on Red List? No scientific reason for this discrimination. Only politics coming into play again — UK cabinet showing clear political proclivity towards India. Unfortunate indeed. @CTurnerFCDO pic.twitter.com/2P2W3LDDu0
— Shireen Mazari (@ShireenMazari1) August 5, 2021
In a tweet from Thursday, August 5, 2021, Mazari said:
“How can UK govt rationally place India on Amber list while keeping Pakistan on Red List? No scientific reason for this discrimination.
“Only politics coming into play again – UK cabinet showing clear political proclivity towards India.
Lord Wajid Khan agreed with Shireen Mazari, referring to India’s move from the red list as a “poor political decision by UK government.”
Even some of the UK’s own MPs disagree with the government’s decision to not move Pakistan to the amber list.
Bradford West MP Naz Shah released a statement on Twitter, saying that the government “favoured political choices rather than science.”
Yasmin Qureshi, the UK’s MP for Bolton, also took to Twitter to express her anger.
In a series of tweets from Wednesday, August 4, 2021, Qureshi said:
“So tonight @grantshapps and the UK Government announced that the UAE, Qatar, India and Bahrain will be moved to the amber list for travel – that’s great.
“But Pakistan remains on the red list.
“Despite Pakistan not having any variants of concern, it remains on the red list.”
“I have questioned the Govt directly, spoken in parliament, asked parl qs, and coordinated letters, to no avail. India, where the Delta variant originated, is now amber.”
The Government is seeking to penalise Pakistan in favour of potential economic benefit
This is clear and blatant discrimination towards Pakistan.
To add insult to injury, the hotel quarantine cost is set to increase by between £450-£800, to a total of £2.2k
— Yasmin Qureshi MP (@YasminQureshiMP) August 4, 2021
“The Government is seeking to penalise Pakistan in favour of potential economic benefit. This is clear and blatant discrimination towards Pakistan.
“Too add insult to injury, the hotel quarantine cost is set to increase by between £450-£800, to a total of £2.2k.”
Following her Twitter thread, Yasmin Qureshi wrote a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson to call out the discrimination against Pakistan.
She also released the letter on Twitter, saying:
“To remove India from the red list despite case rates and the Delta variant but not Pakistan confounds all logic.”