8 people killed in Pakistan as protesters backing anti-Taliban cleric fight police

Published: June 17, 2014
religion-cleric-attack-police

Pakistani policemen arrest an injured protester during clashes in Lahore, Pakistan, Tuesday, June 17, 2014. AP Photo/K.M. Chaudary

ZAHEER BABAR
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

LAHORE, Pakistan — Police clashed Tuesday with followers of an anti-Taliban cleric critical of Pakistan’s government in the eastern city of Lahore, violence that killed eight people, officials said.

The cleric, Tahir-ul-Qadri, is based in Canada but has a network of mosques and religious centres across Pakistan. Qadri led a rally of tens of thousands of his supporters that shut down the capital last year, calling for a delay in elections to prevent electoral fraud. His plan to return to Pakistan on June 23 and rally against the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has once again put him in the limelight.

Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said the clashes killed eight people. The head of Jinnah Hospital, Dr. Abdur Raof, said the hospital received 80 wounded.

The clashes started when authorities came to Qadri’s house and seminary complex to remove security barriers that they said had turned the entire vicinity into a no-go area.

“The police were heavily fired upon from inside the … centre,” said Gujjar, speaking on Pakistani television. Gujjar said that gunfire killed the protesters, not police.

A spokesman for Qadri, Shahid Mursaleem, said the police first shot tear gas to disperse the protesters, then opened fire on them. Mursaleem said police arrested 40 to 50 of the cleric’s followers. He said the government is worried about Qadri’s return and is trying to quiet him.

Qadri on Twitter accused the government of trying to divert attention away from the army operations in North Waziristan, which Qadri has supported. Pakistan launched a major offensive Sunday against militants there after Sharif’s push for peace talks failed to produce results.

Qadri struck a chord with people last year by attacking the state’s inability to solve problems such as electricity and unemployment. But his demand that the government be dissolved and replaced by a military-backed caretaker administration raised concerns that he was being used by the nation’s powerful army to delay parliamentary elections. Qadri denied having any connection to the army.

——

Associated Press writer Rebecca Santana in Islamabad contributed to this report.

08:08ET 17-06-14

[+]

Tags: , , , , ,



Readers Comments (0)

Comments are closed.

Featured

CIVIC ELECTIONS

A new mayor is coming to Surrey, but don’t forget about councillors

SFU prof stresses importance of electing councillors who will push for the Surrey you want AMY REID SURREY NOW SURREY — With incumbent Mayor Dianne…
Continue Reading »

img_3338

Salaam Bombay: Gluten free Indian cuisine

SAMANTHA MCLEOD THE PROVINCE  Salam Bombay: Salaam to the classiest and cleanest side of Bombay, right here in Vancouver! You know when you’re watching an Indian movie…
Continue Reading »

CBC-sexual behaviour-lawsuit

Jian Ghomeshi bails on Prince George appearance on Nov. 7

THE CANADIAN PRESS PRINCE GEORGE — Embattled former “Q” radio host Jian Ghomeshi has pulled out of a speaking engagement organized by the Prince George…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Today in History – Nov. 15

Advance THE CANADIAN PRESS Today in History for Nov. 15: On this date: In 1280, German theologian and music theorist Albertus Magnus died. Magnus taught…
Continue Reading »

Today in History – Nov. 13

Advance THE CANADIAN PRESS Today in History for Nov. 13: On this date: In 354, African theologian Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, was born in Numidia,…
Continue Reading »

Today in History – Nov. 12

Advance THE CANADIAN PRESS Today in History for Nov. 12: On this date: In 1774, British citizens in Quebec protested the Quebec Act which restored…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

health check

Parents of six-year-old girl ‘horrified’ after botched vaccination exposes her to HIV

GORDON MCINTYRE VANCOUVER DESI A six-year-old girl is in danger of having contacted HIV after a routine vaccination went awry in Fort St. James earlier…
Continue Reading »

ghost marriage

11 held for digging women’s graves for ‘ghost marriages’

IANS/EFE Beijing – Chinese police have arrested 11 people for allegedly digging up dead women’s bodies from their graves to sell them for rituals known…
Continue Reading »

Jian Ghomeshi

‘Big Ears Teddy’ Twitter account posted Jian Ghomeshi abuse allegations six months ago

ISHMAEL N. DARO CANADA.COM In less than a week, Jian Ghomeshi has gone from one of the most well-known and beloved CBC personalities to an…
Continue Reading »

CIVIC ELECTIONS

Battleground Surrey: Which mayoral candidate can stop the carnage?

CASSIDY OLIVIER VANCOUVER DESI The streets leading to the Newton Arena are littered with debris from the previous night’s storm. Overflow from the downpour swiftly…
Continue Reading »

Smart 21 communities

Surrey named among World’s Smart21 Communities of 2015

VANCOUVER DESI SURREY, B.C. – The Intelligent Community Forum has named the City of Surrey as one of the world’s Smart21 Communities of 2015. As one…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Bollywood movie Fireflies

Fireflies: Sincerely done; good looking film

SUBHASH K. JHA IANS  Film: “Fireflies”; Cast: Rahul Khanna, Arjun Mathur, Monica Dogra, Shivani Ghai, Aadya Bedi; Writer-Director: Sabal Singh Shekhawat; Rating: *** 1/2 Things…
Continue Reading »

Ismaili musicians - Aga Khan foundation

Salim-Sulaiman show underlines Vancouver’s rising Bollywood cachet

LARISSA CAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI With big-time Bollywood composers Salim-Sulaiman set to kick off their North American tour at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on Saturday, it…
Continue Reading »

Shah Rukh Khan

Burdwan blast: Shah Rukh Khan prays for better times for Bengal

IANS Kolkata – Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan, West Bengal’s brand ambassador, Wednesday expressed his unwillingness to talk about the terror blast in Burdwan, but…
Continue Reading »