Alam freed after brief de­ten­tion at Rus­sian air­port

The Gulf Today - - ASIA -

IS­LAM­ABAD: Pak­istan’s for­eign min­istry said pop singer Fakhre Alam, who is at­tempt­ing to fly around the world in 28 days, has been re­leased by of­fi­cials in Rus­sia after briefly de­tain­ing him upon his ar­rival in the coun­try with an ex­pired visa.

In Tues­day’s state­ment, it said Alam em­barked on the jour­ney ear­lier this month to be­come the first Pak­istani to fly around the world.

The for­eign min­istry said Alam landed at a re­mote Rus­sian air­port on Mon­day about 6,000 kilo­me­tres from Moscow.

Pak­istan has thanked the Rus­sian au­thor­i­ties for re­new­ing Alam’s visa, en­abling him to re­sume his trip.

Pak­istan has tra­di­tion­ally been in the US sphere of in­flu­ence but in­ci­dent comes amid an in­crease in ties be­tween Is­lam­abad and Moscow.

Promi­nent ac­tor Faysal Qu­raishi on Mon­day shared the news of Alam’s ar­rest on his so­cial me­dia ac­counts.

“I ap­peal to Pak government to re­quest Rus­sian government to al­low me to con­tinue my jour­ney to Alaska. I don’t want to give up my mis­sion. I need Pak­istan’s sup­port to carry on our flag to fin­ish this. I have been in a room with­out food or wa­ter. No Wifi. They didn’t give me my phone for 6 hours. I need help,” Qu­raishi fur­ther said on be­half of Alam.

Tak­ing to Twit­ter while be­ing in Ja­pan a day ear­lier, Alam left a mes­sage for his sup­port­ers and cited of how un­be­liev­able it is to have a dream come to re­al­ity as he hangs around.

He said there’s a tough time ahead of him as he reaches the other side of the planet through dif­fer­ent time zones, only to stay alert for the on­ward north­ern specifics cross­ing that is to come with ex­treme freez­ing tem­per­a­tures.

“From here, I will de­part in the wee hours so I reach till the north­ern Ja­pan, pick fuel and head to­wards Rus­sia and cross the wa­ter as most of my flight in the com­ing days will be above the seas.

“I seek your pray­ers so Mis­sion Par­waaz reaches its fi­nal desti­na­tion. The peo­ple in Ja­pan are very beau­ti­ful and civilised. It’s an en­tirely civilised struc­ture and very clean. You wouldn’t spot any garbage on the road,” he said in a video mes­sage. I hope Al­lah bless my coun­try with the same clean­li­ness, kind­li­ness and the urge to live with love, re­spect and care.”

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