Colombo, May 3 (IANS): The Sri Lankan government has ordered the deportation of all foreigners who are currently in the island nation without visas and also those who over-staying their visas, the media reported on Friday.
On Thursday, Internal and Home Affairs Minister Vajira Abeywardana instructed the Controller of Emigration and Immigration to take immediate steps to begin the deportation process, the Daily Mirror reported.
The development comes following Abeywardana’s discussion with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Muslim Religious Affairs Minister M.H.A.Haleem on Wednesday.
It was also agreed during the discussion that a national policy has to be formulated on how to handle the issue of foreign Muslim preachers who visit Sri Lanka to conduct religious classes, give speeches and radicalise youth to perform acts of violence on other religions.
Earlier on Thursday, two Nigerians, a Pakistani and a Bangladeshi national were arrested in the Awissawella and Grandpass areas in Colombo.
Officials have pointed out that there were about 400 foreigners in the country who have overstayed their visas.
The Department of Immigration and Emigration will conduct raids to apprehend those living in Sri Lanka without a valid visa and deport them.
Security measures in Sri Lanka come in the wake of the April 21 Easter Sunday bombings that targeted churches and hotels, killing 253 people and injuring over 500 others.