Imran’s Government Knelt, but Adamant to Expel the Radical French Ambassador

Pakistan's Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed, who was among the interlocutors on behalf of the government. Khan bowed down in talks with TLP.
Imran’s Government Knelt, but Adamant to Expel the Radical French Ambassador
Image Credit: Kashmir Walla

Violence continues in Pakistan over the demand for the release of the religious leader from the banned radical organization Tehreek-e-Labak Pakistan (TLP). The protesters are standing on the main highway near the town of Muridke, about 20 km north of Lahore. Two protesters and two policemen lost their lives in the violent demonstration. Meanwhile, the Imran Khan government bowed down in talks with TLP. Pakistan's Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed, who was among the interlocutors on behalf of the government, said that our talks with the TLP are progressing in a positive manner.

The home minister said the banned outfit had made three major demands, including the expulsion of the French ambassador. The Home Minister said that the government has accepted all the major demands of the TLP. However, there is no question of accepting the demand for the expulsion of the French ambassador. We want a peaceful solution to this issue.

The government does not fulfil its promise

The Home Minister said that we will continue the dialogue with the TLP leadership and we hope that they will end their protest peacefully. On the other hand, TLP negotiating committee member Mufti Omar Al-Azhari told Dainik Bhaskar that the Home Minister assured us that he would place his demand regarding the expulsion of the French ambassador to the Prime Minister.

Image Credit: Amar Ujala
Image Credit: Amar Ujala

If the government does not fulfil its promise to expel the ambassador, the TLP will hold a march in Islamabad as scheduled on Wednesday. We want the release of our leader Saad Rizvi. Let us tell you that the latest violence started last week when the TLP took out a march towards Islamabad demanding the release of leader Rizvi. The march turned so violent that the police had to open fire. The police also arrested hundreds of TLP supporters and leaders.

Radical leader arrested in violence over insulting Prophet

TLP has been continuously demanding the release of Rizvi, who is lodged in Lahore's Kot Lakhpat Jail. Rizvi was detained in April after he threatened the government that there would be demonstrations in the country if the French ambassador was not removed from the country over the issue of painting the Prophet Sahib as it was blasphemy.

After this, there were demonstrations under his leadership. Rizvi's party wants the government to boycott French goods. Earlier this month, the Lahore High Court had ordered that Rizvi be released. The court said that the administration did not have sufficient evidence that Rizvi was involved in terrorist activities. However, despite this, Rizvi was kept in custody.

Image Credit: India TV
Image Credit: India TV

Punjab police angry with Imran government's soft stand

The police in Pakistan's Punjab province are upset with the federal government for taking a soft stance towards the TLP. According to reports, the police have opposed the Imran Khan government's announcement to release more than 350 TLP activists and withdraw cases against others. Earlier, an important meeting was held at Prime Minister Imran Khan's residence regarding violence and demonstration. It was also attended by Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa and Intelligence Chief Faiz Hameed, Federal Minister Shaikh Rasheed Ahmed and other high officials of the Army.

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