Govt to suspend TLP under anti-terror law

ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed has said that the federal government has agreed to suspend the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) under the anti-terrorism law.

The federal minister said that the decision was made at the behest of the Punjab government.

“We are forwarding a summary to the federal cabinet in order to place a ban on the TLP,” Rasheed said in Islamabad, as demonstrations erupted throughout the region.

Protests by a religious group have sparked chaos in major cities around the country for the last two days, claiming the lives of three people, including two police officers. In addition, over 100 police officers have been wounded in clashes with demonstrators.

In response to the TLP’s talks, Rasheed said that the government wanted to table a resolution in the National Assembly and reach an agreement on it, but the TLP insisted on marching to the Faizabad Interchange.

“Our attempts to persuade them were futile. As far as Khatam-e-Nabwat concerned, I am willing to sacrifice my life,” said the minister.

He said that during one of the demonstrations, miscreants stole a police officer’s gun and used it to shoot at others.

Sheikh Rasheed defended the government, claiming it intended to honor the earlier deal with the TLP.

He also said that the FIRs have been logded against demonstrators in compliance with the rules.

“I have never supported this party nor had ever met Khadim Hussain Rizvi (former TLP chief),” said the minister.

He added that the ban has been imposed owing to TLP’s “character” and not due to any political compulsion.

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