Protests erupt as ex-PM’s party says Khan wounded in ‘planned assassination attempt’

  • Share

ISLAMABAD: Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan’s party said on Thursday that he narrowly escaped a “well-planned assassination attempt” when he was injured in the leg during a gun attack on his ‘long march’ convoy, sparking nationwide protests.

The attack occurred as Khan was leading a march to the capital in an attempt to put pressure on the government to call early elections. The movement began last Friday in Lahore and has made daily stops on its way to Islamabad, the capital, where the convoy had hoped to arrive by November 11. Khan’s supporters were crammed into trucks and automobiles in the convoy, but many were also marching on foot.

The ex-caravan PM’s was scheduled to stop at Wazirabad, Punjab’s Gujranwala district, today, Thursday. Wazirabad is around 200 kilometers (120 miles) from Islamabad.

Khan and his close aide Senator Faisal Javed were injured in firing by a shooter who was on the ground while the lawmakers were on a container, according to a statement released by his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party.

“It was a well-planned assassination attempt on Imran Khan,” Khan aide Chaudhry Fawad Hussain stated, adding that an automatic rifle was used. “There were no two ways about it: it was a tight escape.”

Dr. Faisal Sultan, who is in charge of Khan’s medical care, informed reporters outside Shaukat Khanum Hospital that he was “stable.”

“Bullet shrapnels are in his leg,” said an infectious disease specialist in Lahore, where Khan was sent, adding that one bone was chipped. “He’s been transported to the operating room.”

Sultan declined to elaborate, adding that further information would be given after a thorough investigation.

Following the gun incident, photos and video footage released on social media and by TV networks showed Khan supporters flocking to the streets in numerous cities across the country, including Islamabad, Lahore, Karachi, and Peshawar.

PTI supporters blocked Shahrah-e-Faisal, a major route in Karachi, the country’s financial capital. Protests were recorded in at least 24 different sites throughout the city, causing considerable traffic congestion.

Supporters also flocked to the streets of Lahore, Punjab, Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Gilgit, as well as the Khaplu Valley in the distant Gilgit-Baltistan region.

As questions surfaced around the country regarding whether the protest movement will continue in the aftermath of the shooting event, Senator Faisal Javed stated that it would.

Source: Arab News

  • Share