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Fri 27 Nov 2009 03:22 PM

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Random checks for bus travellers to Abu Dhabi

Passengers must provide passport or visa identification - interior ministry.

Bus passengers travelling to Abu Dhabi are facing random checks by police demanding to see valid visas as part of an aggressive national campaign against illegal immigration, according to a report on Friday.

Abu Dhabi-based The National daily reported that the inspections are conducted daily near the Carrefour supermarket on Airport Road by passport control officers.

Passengers must provide passport or visa identification, the interior ministry said. Anyone who did not could be arrested and released only when they proved they had valid visas, the daily added.The National added that Abu Dhabi officials are also encouraging residents to report illegal immigrants. Authorities say their efforts could be fruitless if people refuse to turn in those in violation of immigration laws and continue to employ them.

During the first 10 days of a nationwide campaign that started on November 9, 268 illegal immigrants were arrested, according to officials.

A total 25,313 visa violators and illegal immigrants were arrested between November 2007 and January this year, The National said.

Meanwhile, Abu Dhabi’s Department of Transport has announced that Mawaqif will be offering free parking in the city over the course of the Eid Al Adha and National Day holidays.

The free parking will be in effect from Nov 26 until Dec 3. Regular fees will commence as normal from Dec 5.

Mawaqif is a comprehensive and integrated program for the management of parking in the capital.

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