pakistan protest

Violent protests in Pakistan as PM Imran Khan plays the reverse-sweep on his decision

Just days after banning the TLP party and locking up their leader, Imran Khan changed his mind as the party and its supporters created violence to force him to cave into the radicals. It is now likely that he will expel the French Ambassador and severe economic ties with the European powerhouse.

The reason given for the violence was that French President Emmanual Macron defended the right of publications to republish cartoons of religious figures, in this case Mohammed. This was the reason given for the terrorist slaughter of Charlie Hebdo staff in France in 2015. In a range of related attacks, policemen, innocent civilians and Jews were singled out for murder, with a few hundred being killed in France and random European countries. France has required its citizens to leave France and take extra precautions.

Giving in to the pressure mounted by the radical Islamist party, Saad Hussain Rizvi, the chief of the recently proscribed Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), was released from Lahore jail on Tuesday.

Earlier today, Interior Minister of Pakistan Sheikh Rashid said that Imran Khan’s government is in talks with the banned TLP to present a resolution in the National Assembly seeking the expulsion of the French envoy and withdrawal of cases against its members, Dawn reported. Meanwhile, Pakistan opposition has blasted the Imran Khan-led government over its failure in handling TLP protest across the country.

On Monday, Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari had said that “shedding of human blood and incitement to violence was never the answer to any situation”, recalling that history had taught that “violence begets violence”, Dawn reported.

He condemned the violence and expressed grief over the deaths of the TLP workers as well as policemen during clashes earlier in the week, which he said occurred because of the government’s “inability to handle the situation peacefully”.

TLP has recently been banned by the Pakistan government after violent protests following the arrest of their chief Saad Hussain Rizvi in Lahore on April 12.

TLP Pakistan is a hardline religious group with a massive following across Pakistan. TLP is demanding that the French ambassador be sent home and import of goods from France be banned over blasphemous caricatures published in French magazine Charlie Hebdo. (ANI)

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