Turkey has not changed visa policy for Pakistanis

Media pages share misleading reports after four Nepalis were abducted by Pakistani men in Turkey

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Claim: Posts shared online claim that the “Turkish government has tightened the visa policy for Pakistanis after crimes reportedly involving Pakistanis started surfacing last week”. The Turkish government has also “stopped issuing temporary residence permits for Pakistanis”, according to the posts.

Fact: The claims are false and misleading as, at the time of publishing, no official announcement has been made by the Turkish government about any changes to the visa policy or residence permits for Pakistanis. The Pakistan Embassy in Turkey denied media reports regarding any such changes for Pakistanis.

Fact or Fiction?

On 28 April 2022, Facebook page Startup Pakistan published a post claiming that the Turkish government Turkey has tightened its visa policies for Pakistanis and has stopped issuing residence permits for Pakistani nationals in light of recent events.

On 25 April, Pakistan men reportedly kidnapped four Nepalis in Taksim Square, Istanbul. The victims were tortured for three days and the kidnappers demanded 10,000 euros for their release. However, the Turkish police raided the house and arrested six people, including a woman. A few days ago it was also reported by Turkish media that Pakistani men were harassing women in Turkey by making videos of them and uploading them on Tiktok.

After the recent events mentioned above, Aaj News reported that the Turkish government has tightened its visa policies for Pakistan. It also claimed that the issue of residence permits to Pakistani nationals will be halted.

Soch Fact Check found the claim to be misleading as no official announcement supporting the claims has been made by the Turkish government. In fact on 29 April 2021, the Pakistan Embassy in Turkey denied media claims via a post on its verified Twitter account, stating that “Turkey has not made any changes in its policy of issuing visas and residence permits specific to Pakistan nationals.”

Tweet by Pakistan Embassy in Turkey official account

Virality

To investigate the virality of the post in question, Soch Fact Check conducted a CrowdTangle analysis. The keyword “Turkish government has tightened the visa policy for Pakistanis” garnered 8,800 interactions across 10 posts from 28 – 30 April 2022.

The misleading claim has also been shared here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here on Facebook.

Conclusion: The Turkish government has not made any changes in their policy of issuing visas or residence permits to Pakistani nationals. Posts suggesting otherwise are misleading.

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