Pakistani Police Use Tear Gas to Disperse Protesters in Islamabad

Islamic protesters 'contacted India' during Islamabad clashes admits Pakistan

Sources revealed that despite the two-hour long discussion, no decision was reached while Islamabad police and administration advised against another operation against Faizabad sit-in including devotees of Sunni Tehreek and Tehreek-e-Labaik.

Media reports quoted an interior ministry order, which authorised the deployment of "sufficient" military troops in Islamabad to "control law and order" in the city until further notice.

A senior government official speaking on condition of anonymity, due to restrictions on speaking to the media, told Anadolu Agency that the security forces had been asked not to take on the violent protesters pending further orders.

The clashes began when police launched an operation involving some 4,000 officers to disperse around 1,000 activists from Tehreek, a new hard-line Islamist political party, and break up their camp.

The agency had ordered local TV channels to refrain from live coverage of the ongoing government operation. "Suggested to handle Islamabad Dharna (sit-in) peacefully avoiding violence from both sides as it is not in national interest and cohesion", said spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor.

Dawn and Geo News reported that there are prison vans, ambulances at the site.

The government was accused by the critics, of bungling its response to the protest, and allowing a minor issue to grow into a headline-grabbing and potentially risky situation. Helicopters and drones are being used by the authorities for aerial surveillance.

The TLY leaders are now calling for the resignation of entire cabinet of Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to call off the protest.

In Lahore, protesters gathered in more than 30 locations, said Kiran Nazish, a local journalist.

The protesters are demanding that law minister Zahid Hamid resign over a hastily-abandoned amendment to the oath that election candidates must swear.

The protests spread to other cities in Pakistan, including Karachi, Lahore, Hyderabad and Faisalabad. Traffic jam has choked arteries near Data Darbar.

"We are aware of reports that the Pakistani government has taken action to block Twitter service, as well as other social media services, and that users are having difficulty using Twitter in Pakistan".

News media also reported protesters breaking into the house of former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan.

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