ICC can`t do much to solve visa problems for Pakistan fans
Karachi, Jan 29: The International Cricket Council has said it cannot do much to solve the problems being faced by Pakistan supporters and travel agents in seeking visas for the World Cup to be held in the Caribbean in March-April.
An ICC spokesman said as far as provision of visas for the tournament was concerned, it was not an issue the ICC or the Cricket World Cup Committee could control.
"Neither body can wave a magic wand to address and resolve any issues potential travellers may have. It is a government-to-government matter at a political level, and, as such, it is up to the respective governments involved to adderess it at that level," he said.
Travel agents and supporters in Pakistan have complained that they were facing problems getting visas as they have to apply to the Trinidad and Tobago consulate in Delhi, authorised by CARICOM (the joint committee of the governments of the nine countries of the West Indies hosting the tournament) to issue visas in South Asia.
Travel agents said they would face a lot of group cancellations if the process was not made easier.
The Pakistan Cricket Board has already asked its foreign ministry and the CWC to help set up a satellite visa office in Pakistan for the tournament. However, the request is still being processed, a PCB spokesman said.
Fans from Australia and New Zealand have also complained of problems getting visas for the World Cup.
The ICC said it could only pass on the views they receive to relevant authorities such as CARICOM.
"If the relevant authorities see fit, on the basis of the feedback supplied, to seek to amend the current arrangements then I am sure they will look to do so," he said.