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Political parties condemn use of force on protesters


ISLAMABAD: As violence erupted in Islamabad’s most sensitive area the other night, political parties across the country condemned the incident.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Jahangir Tareen termed the government’s action as undemocratic and held it responsible for “shoving the country in flames”.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervaiz Khattak termed the ongoing protest as a constitutional right of the people, adding that the country needed to get rid of the present ruling class.
PTI leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi termed the government’s actions as ‘dictatorial’.
Talking to a private news channel, Qureshi demanded legal action against those attacking the protesters.
He said that the PTI had decided to get an FIR registered against the Punjab Police for attacking unarmed protesters.
He called upon the government to stop the use of violence against protesters, and added that the PTI seeks an end to the deadlock.
He added that a meeting with government representatives had been scheduled for today (Monday) but there had been no sign of progress from the their side.
The PTI is staging protests in the major cities of the country, including Lahore, Mianwali, Multan, Jacobabad, Tando Mohammad Khan, Mirpurkhas, Quetta, Noshehro Feroz, Khanewal, Kandhkot, Tando Allahyar and Jhang, while the Mutahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) and Majlis-e-Wahdatul Muslimeen (MWM) are observing a ‘day of mourning’ in Karachi. MQM hoisted black flags on its offices across the metropolitan. 
Former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani condemned the violence in Red Zone and termed the incident the “darkest day in Pakistan’s history”.
Condemning the use of force against protesters, he said that such an action had not been taken even by the military rulers of the country.
Jamaat-e-Islami chief Sirajul Haq said that he had attempted numerous times to prevent the present situation from happening and vowed to continue with his efforts.
Addressing his party workers, he advised PM Nawaz Sharif to contact PTI chief Imran Khan, adding that the crisis needed to be dealt with patience and tolerance. He said that inflation was the issue for the common man rather than debate on military serving as mediator in the ongoing political situation.
The JI chief said that the entire nation wanted a solution to the prevailing political crisis. He claimed that he was in contacts with the government, Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) during the last 22 days for resolving the crisis.
He said that all political leaders had encouraged the role of the JI in the ongoing political impasse.
Meanwhile, MQM’s senior leader Farooq Sattar said that the crackdown on protesters was carried out to save power.
Addressing a press conference on Sunday, Sattar said that government should mull over an in-house change to defuse the situation if it was necessary. “We will not remain detached for too long if issues are not resolved soon,” he warned.
The MQM leader said that situation was getting complicated. “Situation in Islamabad was affecting the whole country,” he stated. 
Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) leader Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi said that the police used chemical weapons in Islamabad wherein the forces assaulted the protesters. Talking to the media, he said there were similarities between the Model Town carnage and the Islamabad incident.

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