(LIVE) Islamabad protests: Army is not intervening in current political crisis, Imran reiterates

PTI chief says Chinese president must have postponed his visit due to containers sealing off the capital


Our Correspondent/web Desk September 05, 2014

ISLAMABAD: Fierce clashes erupted between law-enforcers and protesters in Islamabad late Saturday night as protesters attempted to march towards the Prime Minister House.

Tear-gas and rubber bullets have been used by police, while protesters of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) and the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) responded with pelting stones.

The clashes came on the 14th day of sit-ins in the capital, which had thus far remained without incident, and continued for three days.
KEY DEVELOPMENTS 

-   Joint session continues for a fourth day

- Khursheed Shah refers to Chaudhry Nisar as a wolf in the guise of a sheep

- PM Nawaz meets Maulana Fazlur Rehman before the start of joint session

- PM Nawaz says being the prime minister of Pakistan is no bed of roses

- Aitzaz Ahsan bursts out of anger as he responds to Nisar's land grabbing, LPG quota allegations

- Asif Ali Zardari condemns Nisar's statements about Aitzaz

- Nisar says if anyone tries to harm him, he will retaliate

Read all our coverage of PTI’s Azadi March here and the Inqilab March here.

Updates of the Islamabad protests from August 31, 2014 to September 2, 2014, can be found here.



September 5, 11:30pm

Imran Khan appeals to various sectors of the society, including off-duty police and military officers to join his sit-in.

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September 5, 11:20pm

We are moving back to D-chowk on Saturday, as this place is insufficient to accommodate PTI protesters, says PTI chief Imran.

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September 5, 9:12pm

In a joint press conference with PTI vice chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar says: “There has been tangible progress during the talks today.”

“We want to conclude this as soon as possible to improve the economy and political stability which is hampering foreign dignitaries from visiting,” Dar adds.

Qureshi says, “Jehangir Tareen and I will meet Chinese ambassadors tomorrow to assure them that if the Chinese president visits, the PTI will welcome him and clear ways for him.”

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September 5, 8:20pm

A war of egos tested recent claims of a ‘united’ Parliament when allegations made by Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar against PPP leader and Senator Aitzaz Ahsan led to a heated joint session of Parliament.

Read here for the full story.



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September 5, 7:25pm

PTI chairman Imran Khan addressing his supporters, clarifies that the army is not intervening in the current political situation.

Refuting claims that he is protesting on the directions of the army, Imran says, "They (government) should be ashamed of itself for defaming their army."

"I am here on the directions of the nation," he reiterates.

“It is not our fault if the Chinese president has postponed his visit,” says the PTI chief, refuting allegations that the Chinese president’s security team did not give him clearance owing to his protests.

"His (Chinese president) visit has been postponed because of the 800 containers sealing off the capital."

"There should be no doubts, I won’t leave Islamabad till PM Nawaz resigns," the PTI chief says, adding, "Talks can continue between the committees."

Imran criticises parliamentary leaders for not condemning the police crackdown on his and PAT protesters on Saturday night as they moved forward towards PM House.

The PTI chief rhetorically questions Nawaz: “Did you not ask Yousuf Raza Gillani to resign when he was the prime minister.”

"I am ready to sacrifice my life for this 'azadi', I will not go back from here," he says.

The PTI chief advises his supporters not to vote for any leader who’s assets are abroad.

"The days of Nawaz's rule are over," he says, adding, "I feel the Chinese president has cancelled his trip because he knows the PM is about to leave."

Further, he alleges that the government's claims of the Chinese president visiting to sign investment deals are incorrect, in fact, Imran says the government had sought a loan from China.

Imran wraps-up his address urging more people to join his march.



Express News screengrab of PTI chairman Imran Khan addressing his supporters.

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September 5, 6:30pm

MQM chief Altaf Hussain has appealed to the PAT and the PTI to end their protests owing to heavy rainfall, which has claimed over 70 lives in Punjab and Kashmir.

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September 5, 6:10pm

The government’s negotiating team has reached PTI leader Jehangir Tareen’s residence to meet with PTI’s negotiating team, Express News reports.

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September 5, 5:20pm

JI chief Sirajul Haq says that a settlement can only be reached "if people are will to get rid of their egos," while addressing the media in Islamabad on Friday.

Further, PPP leader Rehman Malik adds that the PTI and the opposition jirga will have a meeting at 5:30pm today.

Meanwhile, referring to reports of the Chinese president postponing his trip to Pakitan, PTI vice chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi says that his party understands the friendly ties between Pakistan and China.

“We will welcome the Chinese president and clear the way for him,” says Qureshi, adding, “The sit-in will not affect his visit in any way.”



Express News screengrab of PTI vice chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi, PPP leader Rehman Malik and JI chief Sirajul Haq talking to media representatives.

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September 5, 3:10pm


Terming the exchange between Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar and PPP leader Aitzaz Ahsan in a press meet-up last night and the joint session of Parliament today “unfortunate,”  former president Asif Ali Zardari defends the latter’s stance.

“The prime minister expressed sorrow over the exchange but some people hold a different opinion,” he says, hinting at Nisar.

Further, referring to talks between the protesting parties and the government, Zardari says: “The deadlock must end.”


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September 5, 2:57pm



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September 5, 2:55pm

The government has sent PTI a reply to their eight-page proposal to probe rigging allegations in a bid to end the political impasse between the PML-N government and protesters.

The reply was endorsed by 10 parliamentary parties before being handed over to the opposition jirga to deliver it to PTI.

The reply deems PTI’s rigging allegations baseless and clarifies that PM Nawaz and Punjab CM Shahbaz Sharif will not resign.

"We have already recommended the formation of a judicial commission to probe rigging allegations and submit its findings within 30 days," the reply adds.

PTI's eight-page proposal can be viewed here.

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September 5, 2:20pm

Addressing his supporters, PAT chief Dr Tahirul Qadri appreciates their efforts and resilience for remaining steadfast despite difficulties and harsh rains.

“Not one parliamentary leader came to listen to your (supporters) demands or to help you,” says Qadri.



Express News screengrab of PAT chief Dr Tahirul Qadri

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September 5, 2:07pm

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan has said that if anyone tries to harm him, he will retaliate and hold a press conference, Express New reports.

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September 5, 1:45pm

Minister for Railways Khwaja Saad Rafique, while speaking outside the Parliament, requests PTI and PAT chiefs to end their sit-ins but continue on with their demands.

He adds that the visit of a president of a third country is now being affected because of these protests, adding that if the Chinese president visits India and not Pakistan it will not be something to be proud of.

Rafique says that Imran and Qadri will have to answer to the nation

"Because of the sit-ins there has been a loss of Rs550 billion to the economy," he says. "Who will give this back," he questions.

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September 5, 1:00pm

Former president Asif Ali Zardari has condemned Nisar’s statements about PPP leader Aitzaz Ahsan and demanded an apology from the interior minister, Express News reports.

He has reportedly said that he is proud of Aitzaz’s sacrifices for democracy.

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September 5, 11:40am

Unleashing a furious outburst at Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, PPP leader Aitzaz Ahsan on Thursday urges Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to reshuffle his cabinet once the ongoing crisis ends.

Read full story here.




Express News screengrab of Aitzaz Ahsan addressing the joint session

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September 5, 11:28am

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif interjects during joint session and expresses sorrow over Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar's remarks against PPP leader Aitzaz Ahsan in a press meet-up last night.

"We should all vow to stand together for the supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law." he urges

Nawaz says the opposition and the government have decided to stick together for Pakistan.

"More than my government, what is dear to me is the unity between the two sides of lower house," Nawaz says.

"Being the prime minister is no bed of roses," he tells his lawmakers.

The premier laments dignitaries cancelling their visits to Pakistan due to the current political turmoil.


Express News screengrab of PM addressing the joint session


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September 5, 11:20am

"We respect the criticism of the Opposition," says PML-N leader Raja Zafarul Haq.

"The role of opposition has strengthened the parliament," adds Haq.

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September 5, 10:47am

Leader of the Opposition in NA Khursheed Shah has started to address the joint session of the Parliament.

"Parliament has become a wall to save democracy." says Shah

"A person who modifies politics to business does not have any respect." remarks Shah

Shah tells the assembly that saving democracy is mistaken for supporting the government.

He adds that the PM’s resignation will lead to the weakening  of democracy.

"Do not resign," says Shah

Shah implicitly refers to Chaudhry Nisar as a wolf in the guise of a sheep.

"Interior Minister is a snake up PM Nawaz’s sleeves." Shah claims

"People who bring their leaders on cross-roads cannot be faithful to leadership." continues Shah

"We cautioned PM about traitors in his party." claims Shah

Shah believes that Chaudhry Nisar should apologise to the Parliament not just to Aitzaz Ahsan.

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September 5, 3:30am

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif meets JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman one on one in Islamabad, Express News reports.

They reportedly discussed the ongoing political situation and the protests being held in the federal capital by PAT and PTI.

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September 5, 3:30am

Negotiators of both the government and the protesting parties were bogged down on Thursday in a bitter stalemate after their leaders hardened their positions, squeezing out the space for further political accommodation.

Read the full story here.

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September 5, 1:30am

JI chief Sirajul Haq says it is welcoming to see Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) and the government coming on to the table for talks, Express News reports.

Talks are progressing slowly but still there are several legal and constitutional issues to have to be tackled, says JI chief. He adds that, “We are trying to solve this crisis as soon as possible.”

Meanwhile, PAT president Raheeq Abbasi says the protesters have vacated the parliament house lawn and the roads of Pak Secretariat will also be open for employees.

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COMMENTS (35)

Ajab Kahani | 7 years ago | Reply

@Qaseem: What an assinine comment ! Check your facts; the most patriotic element is the Army, without it, this nation would have been balkanised a long time ago.

Ajab Kahani | 7 years ago | Reply

@Adnan: Get your facts right. No visit had been finalised. This is just another political ruse to malign the freedom fighters.

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