ISLAMABAD: The Foreign Office has set up a special coordination cell in the wake of the spread of the Coronavirus and announced various measures to maintain social distance.
The Foreign Office said that the newly formed cell would be headed by Special Secretary (Admin) Mohammed Ahmad Khan and that the cell would be in contact with embassies in Pakistan and Pakistani missions overseas.
The social distance measures introduced by the Foreign Office include partial suspension of consular services and changes in weekly media briefing procedures.
The Foreign Office said that "in view of the growing threat of the Coronavirus, the Foreign Ministry has stopped the process of coming to the Consular Service of the people to confirm the various documents, but only those who have received a Power of Attorney (Mukhtar Nama) certification. Access will still be allowed. '
According to the Foreign Office, the ban on consular services will remain in place from March 18 to April 3, 2020, after which the situation will be reviewed and announced in the future.
It is to be noted that the Consular Services Office in Islamabad is provided at the Headquarters of the Foreign and Camp Offices of the provincial capitals, and hundreds of people go to the Consular Service daily for the legalization of various documents.
The Foreign Office further said that verification of various certificates will be done through courier companies like Pakistan Post, Jerry's, Leopard and TCS, keeping in view the difficulties of the people.
On the other hand, there was also a change in the method of weekly media briefing under which the spokesperson would give a preliminary statement live while journalists would be able to ask questions via email.
According to the Foreign Office statement, the answers to these questions will be posted on the website along with the initial statement.
It is understood that 237 cases of Coronavirus have been reported so far in the country, which the government has banned from educational institutions, entertainment venues, public gatherings, and other social events to prevent the spread.