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Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan appears in court amid protests by his supporters


Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan will appear before a special court on Wednesday after his arrest on corruption charges sparked violent protests by his supporters across the country.

The arrest of Khan, the former international cricketer who served as prime minister from 2018 to 2022, comes within the framework of a long political crisis in Pakistan, while dozens of judicial investigations have targeted Khan, 70, since his overthrow in 2022.

He is supposed to appear on Wednesday morning before a special court that will be held in a police building.

Violent protests erupted after Khan’s arrest. Demonstrators stormed the house of the military commander of Lahore (east) and closed the entrance gates to the army headquarters in Rawalpindi, near Islamabad. The police used tear gas and water cannons against demonstrators in Karachi (south) and Lahore.

Pakistani Interior Minister Rana Sanalla confirmed that Khan’s arrest “was carried out in accordance with the law”. He pointed out that its implementation was carried out by the country’s main anti-corruption body, the National Accountability Office, noting that this is an “independent body that is not subject to government control.”

It called on the United States and the United Kingdom to respect the “rule of law”.

During a large gathering at the weekend in Lahore, Khan accused the senior intelligence officer, General Faisal Naseer, of involvement in an assassination attempt in November, during which the former prime minister was shot in the leg.

But the army denied the accusations on Tuesday. “These fabricated and malicious allegations are regrettable and unacceptable,” he said in a statement, considering it “loud propaganda” aimed at promoting “political goals.”

For his part, Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said, “His baseless allegations against General Faisal Naseer and our intelligence officers cannot be tolerated or accepted.”

The military establishment, which has great influence in Pakistan’s domestic and foreign policy, rarely faces criticism.

Pakistani authorities have restricted access to Facebook, Twitter and other networks, according to Internet watchdog organization Netblocks.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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