Saturday, Dec 20, 2014Saturday, Dec 20, 2014

Asia

 

Populist cleric threatens march to topple Pakistan government

Published on Aug 7, 2014 7:46 PM
 
Pakistani cleric Tahir-ul-Qadri flashes a 'victory sign' as he addresses supporters at a rally in Lahore on June 23, 2014. Tahir-ul-Qadri threatened on Thursday, Aug 7 to march on the Pakistani capital and overthrow the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, days after an opposition leader promised a massive anti-government rally to push for fresh elections. -- PHOTO: AFP 

LAHORE (AFP) - A populist cleric threatened Thursday to march on the Pakistani capital and overthrow the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, days after an opposition leader promised a massive anti-government rally to push for fresh elections.

Tahir-ul-Qadri alleges that more than 500 of his followers have been arrested by police in a campaign of intimidation, leaving him with no choice but to revolt if it continues.

A statement released by his Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) cited Qadri as saying: "If the government continues with the arrests of PAT workers or tries to arrest me, we will have no option left to immediately announce a call for the revolution."

Authorities have so far denied that any arrests have been made. But clashes between Qadri supporters and police in June left 14 activists dead in a rare example of political violence in the relatively peaceful Punjab province.

 
If you are not a subscriber, you can get instant, unlimited access here

Videos