Prominent Irish journalist Declan Walsh has been ordered to leave Pakistan, the Irish Times reports.

Pakistan's interior ministry ordered the expulsion of Walsh on Thursday ahead of the national elections.

The 39-year old journalist, from Ballina, Co Mayo, started his career in The Sunday Business Post. He has lived and worked in  Pakistan for the past nine years, writing on the country's violent political upheavals, mostly for The Guardian newspaper of Britain. He has served as the Islamabad bureau chief for the New York Times since 2012.

The New York Times reported that the Pakistani ministry did not give an explanation for the expulsion order, which was delivered by police officers  to Walsh at his home on Thursday.

"It is informed that your visa is hereby canceled in view of your undesirable activities.You are therefore advised to leave the country within 72 hours," the order stated.

The US newspaper said it strongly protested the move and was seeking Walsh's reinstatement.

The New York Times executive editor, Jill Abramson, sent a letter of protest to Pakistan's interior minister, Malik Muhammad Habib Khan, asking the minister to reinstate Walsh's visa and describing the journalist as a "reporter of integrity who has at all times offered balanced, nuanced and factual reporting on Pakistan."

Prominent Irish journalist Declan Walsh has been ordered to leave Pakistan.