Monday, November 20, 2017

Pakistan: Anger Grows As Islamabad Shut Down For Nearly Two Weeks


Roughly 2,000 protesters from the Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah Pakistan group have blocked a main highway used by thousands of commuters since November 6, causing hours-long traffic snarls. 

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK Desk
Source/Credit: NDTV News
By AFP | November 21, 2017

An Islamabad court warned authorities Monday to obey its order to shut down a protest by a little-known hardline religious group, which has sparked widespread anger by virtually bringing the capital to a halt for two weeks.

The Islamabad High Court said it would hold officials in contempt if they did not launch a crackdown, as enraged commuters called for the roads to be opened and critics accused the government of creating a dangerous precedent by failing to take a tough stance.

The roughly 2,000 protesters from the Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah Pakistan group have blocked a main highway used by thousands of commuters since November 6, causing hours-long traffic snarls.

The government insisted on negotiating with the demonstrators, who are a small group by Pakistani standards, even after the court issued an order for the roads to be cleared by last Saturday.

"This is a very serious situation," a written statement from the court said Monday. It blasted the lack of progress as "beyond comprehension" and said the suffering of citizens had reached its limit.

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