Imran Khan: Pakistani ex-Prime Minister shot in foot in assassination attempt at rally


Islamabad, Pakistan
CNN

Pakistan’s former prime minister Imran Khan was shot in the leg at a rally on Thursday, a party official said, adding that the incident was an assassination attempt.

A bullet hit Khan in his leg after the gunman opened fire, senior Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Umar said.

The former Pakistan cricket captain was taken from the rally venue near the city of Gujranwala to receive treatment in Lahore.

Police said they arrested a man suspected of firing shots at the rally. The male suspect was arrested with a 9 mm handgun and two empty magazines, police said.

Video capture of the incident

At least one person was killed in the incident, said Faisal Javed, a senior PTI politician and close ally of Khan, who suffered a head wound in the attack. The name of the victim has not been released.

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In a video statement, Javed, who can be seen sitting up while receiving treatment, said: “Please pray for us, for Imran Khan, pray for our colleagues who are seriously injured and pray for our party member who has died and is a martyr.”

At least two other people were injured in the shooting.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, who came to power after Khan lost a no-confidence vote in parliament in April, condemned Thursday’s attack on his political rival on Twitter.

“I condemn the incident of firing on PTI Chairman Imran Khan,” Sharif wrote, adding that he had asked for an “immediate report on the incident” and would pray for the recovery of the injured.

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“Violence should have no place in our country’s politics,” Sharif wrote.

On October 21, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) recommended that Khan be disqualified from holding political office for five years, which could further exacerbate political tensions in the country.

Imran Khan map

After reading out the recommendation, ECP chief Sikandar Sultan Raja announced that Khan was disqualified for indulging in “corrupt activities”.

The commission said its decision was based on Khan having “made false statements” in connection with a declaration of the sale of gifts sent to him by the leaders of Saudi Arabia and Dubai while he was in office, a criminal offense under the country’s constitution. .

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Kahn was removed in a vote of no confidence after allegations of mismanagement and economic mismanagement.

Since then, he has repeatedly claimed, without providing any evidence, that the United States orchestrated his overthrow. Khan’s accusations have become the focus of rallies he has held across Pakistan in his bid to return to power.

His claims have struck a chord with young residents in a country where anti-American sentiment is high and anti-establishment sentiment is being fueled by the growing cost-of-living crisis.

This is not the first time that Pakistani politicians have been attacked.

Former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was assassinated on 27 December 2007, while then Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani survived an assassination attempt in 2008.

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