Violence stops after Pakistan law minister quits
Govt 'surrenders' to hardliners' demand for old oath
Pakistan's law minister Zahid Hamid yesterday quit, as the government "surrendered" to hardline religious groups, who called off their protests in Islamabad that had left six people dead and hundreds injured. The protesters had demanded his removal for changes in a law related to the Khatm-i-Nabuwwat (finality of prophethood) oath in the Elections Act 2017. The sit-in had paralysed the national capital for three weeks.
A Pakistani woman walks past a burnt vehicle near the site of a protest in Rawalpindi. Pic/AFP
Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah chief Khadim Hussain Rizvi said, "We have decided to end the protest after assurance by the army chief and an agreement with government." Rizvi was at the Faizabad interchange, where he has been camping with over 2,000 supporters for last three weeks. Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui of Islamabad HC, however, slammed the government and said, "The court had asked you to clear the roads, not an agreement with protesters. What you've done is surrender."
Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa yesterday left for Riyadh to attend a counter-terror conference hosted by Saudi Arabia. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman opened the maiden meeting on Sunday.
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