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Pakistan: Hardline Islamist group threatens stage-in until release of chief Rizvi

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Lahore | October 25, 2021 7:16:48 AM IST
The Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), a proscribed hardline Islamist group, warned on Sunday that its workers will stage a sit-in in Muridke near the city of Lahore and then move to Islamabad by Tuesday evening.

"The government has gone back on its word thrice. This time we will sit and wait," said a statement issued by the proscribed group's leadership council on Sunday.

Hundreds of TLP workers took to the streets throughout the country to exert pressure on the government for the release of its chief, Hafiz Saad Hussain Rizvi.

"No one will go home until the entire TLP leadership, including chief Saad Hussain Rizvi, comes to the container and makes an announcement," said the statement. "Even if a member of the council says go home without Saad Rizvi, you may shoot that leader too," it added.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmad said Sunday all the cases against the protestors of TLP will be dropped by Wednesday.

This announcement was made after an eight-hour-long meeting between the arrested Saad Rizvi and the Imran Khan government, ARY News reported.

Rasheed said the ban on TLP will also be reviewed in the days to come. The Pakistani publication also stated that a plan is being devised for the release of its chief Saad Rizvi's release.

On Saturday, the Interior Minister returned to his country after he was called back by Imran Khan, to deal with the ongoing security situation in the country.

Pakistan Interior Minister was forced to return to Pakistan after TLP had announced that it will start a "long march" towards Islamabad on Friday against the detention of its chief Hafiz Saad Hussain Rizvi, Pakistani news channel Geo News reported.

Thousands of personnel of various Pakistani forces were deployed on Saturday to stop a possible march to Islamabad by the proscribed hardline Islamist group -- Tehreek-i-Labbik Pakistan (TLP).

"The peaceful Namoos-i-Risalat march of the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan towards Islamabad will start after Friday prayers" from the TLP's Markaz (headquarters), the statement said, adding that the group also had a "plan B" in case its members were stopped from marching on the capital, Dawn newspaper reported.

The publication stated that the capital administration approached the Pakistan interior ministry to seek personnel of Rangers and the Frontier Constabulary (FC).

The report stated that security personnel were being deployed in and around Red Zone and the Faizabad Interchange. Moreover, a contingent of 200 police personnel each was deployed at the entry points in the city.

This decision was taken by the government after the first round of negotiations held in Lahore concluded without any result. (ANI)

 
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