Conflicts & War

Pakistan former PM Khan’s supporters on guard against fresh arrest attempt

Islamabad, Mar 17 (EFE).- Supporters of former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan remained on alert on Friday around his residence, after clashes in recent days with security forces, and faced with the possibility of a fresh attempt to arrest him in a case related to gifts received during his tenure.

The Lahore High Court has given Khan respite by extending the ban on fresh police actions at the residence of the opposition leader until this afternoon, according to local media reports.

But in the face of uncertainty, hundreds of supporters of Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party remain in the vicinity of his residence in the eastern city of Lahore to protect the former cricket star.

On Tuesday, the police launched an operation to arrest the former Pakistani prime minister, the second in less than a month after another failed attempt on Mar.5.

However, PTI leaders called on their followers to take to the streets and the action by the security forces resulted in clashes.

After two days of fighting, which left hundreds injured, the authorities were forced to temporarily step back.

Khan has remained entrenched in his residence in the eastern city of Lahore for almost two weeks, after being absent from several judicial citations, although he has assurance that he will appear Saturday in court.

Khan has been accused of keeping gifts received during his term without giving them to a government depository where the gifts from foreign dignitaries are kept and.

Those willing to retain the gifts may do so by paying 50 percent of the value of the item assessed by the depository officials.

Khan has also been implicated in other cases, and has excused himself from appearing in court over health problems and lack of security after he suffered gunshot wounds to both legs from an assassination attempt last November.

The former ruler was removed from office last year through a vote of no confidence, which Khan blamed on a US move to expel him from power.

He later claimed that it was former Pakistani Army Chief Qamar Bajwa who conspired with the opposition to oust him. EFE


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