Accessibility links

Breaking News

Pakistan Bans Radical Islamist Party Following Clashes

Paramilitary soldiers detain a supporter of Tehreek-i-Labaik Pakistan, a radical Islamist political party, during a clash, in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, April 14, 2021.

Pakistan announced Wednesday that it would ban radical Islamist party Tehreek-i-Labaik Pakistan after its supporters clashed with law enforcement for a third day, leaving seven dead and injuring more than 300 police.

Pakistan Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said the party was being banned under Rule 11-B of the country's Anti-Terrorism Act of 1997.

"I have approved a proposal sent by the government of Punjab to ban the TLP," Ahmed said. "We have also warned those who are funding the TLP.

"The government will deal with an iron fist with those who take the law into their own hands."

The announcement came hours after Pakistani Rangers cleared major routes following clashes with TLP supporters who were blocking the roads.

Ahmed added that Rangers would remain in all major cities of the country during Ramadan to maintain peace.

The TLP launched a countrywide protest Monday after the arrest of its leader, Saad Rizvi. He was arrested before the April 20 deadline that TLP had given to the government regarding the expulsion of the French ambassador over the publishing of cartoons in France of the Prophet Muhammad.