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Clashes continue in Pakistan as police try to arrest ex-PM Imran Khan

Clashes between Pakistan’s police and supporters of former Prime Minister Imran Khan have persisted outside his home in the eastern city of Lahore, a day after officers went to arrest him for failing to appear in court on graft charges.

The police operation triggered clashes between Khan’s supporters and police in the country’s major cities, including Karachi, Islamabad, the garrison city of Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Quetta and elsewhere in Pakistan.

For the past 18 hours, police were firing tear gas at the house as the 70-year-old opposition leader’s supporters hurled rocks and bricks at the officers. The upscale area of Zaman Park where Khan lives was under siege since Tuesday. 

Early Wednesday, Khan emerged from his house to meet with his supporters. He said he was ready to travel to Islamabad on March 18 under his arrest warrant, but police did not accept the offer.

The confrontation outside Khan’s house continued. About a dozen police and some 35 of Khan’s supporters were reported injured. 

Khan, who was ousted in a no-confidence vote in Parliament in April, was ordered to appear before a judge in Islamabad on Friday to answer charges of illegally selling state gifts he had received during his term as premier and concealing his assets.

The former premier has avoided appearances before the court since November, when he was wounded in a gun attack at a protest rally in the eastern Punjab province, claiming he was not medically fit to travel from Lahore to Islamabad to face indictment.

Last week, he went to Islamabad to appear before three courts, but he failed to appear before the fourth court to face indictment in the graft case, which is a legal process for starting his trial.

Khan has claimed that the string of cases against him, which includes terrorism charges, are a plot by the current government.

Several injured as Pakistan police, ex-PM Khan’s supporters clash in Lahore

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