Pakistan's parliament will consider deporting the French ambassador

Pakistan's parliament will consider deporting the French ambassador



LAHORE, Pakistan (AP) - Pakistan's parliament will consider a resolution on Tuesday on whether to expel the French ambassador for publishing a controversial cartoon depicting the Prophet of Islam. It is being investigated whether the government accepts threats from extremist Islamists.


The country's interior minister said the resolution would withdraw cases against Islamists in connection with deadly anti-French protests.


The fate of the resolution was not clear, but the parliamentary debate on the issue will be a test of whether Prime Minister Imran Khan succumbs to pressure from the hardline party - and the banned Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan Party.


Pakistan's interior minister, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, announced the proposal in a video message after an overnight meeting with party representatives, which has been under discussion since last week for the deportation of the French ambassador.


Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online. He is also protesting the April 12 arrest of his leader, Saad Rizvi, a cleric who emerged as the group's leader in November after the sudden death of his father, Khadim Hussain Rizvi. His party wants to boycott French products, and the French ambassador was expelled in February under an agreement reached between the government and Rizvi's party.


However, the government has said it is committed to discussing the issue in parliament before Tuesday, April 20. At the same time, Ahmed said that a resolution would be tabled in the lower house of parliament, the National Assembly, by the priest's government to discuss the issue of deportation. French Ambassador


Khan's government has a simple majority in the National Assembly.


Rizvi's supporters took to the streets across the country last week when police arrested him for threatening the government in protest of the French ambassador's deportation. The reaction of Rizvi's supporters against his arrest was so strong that violence spread across the country, killing four police officers and at least six protesters.


When authorities sent paramilitary troops to help police in cracking down on Rizvi's supporters, Khan banned local media coverage of Rizvi's party.


The blackout of protests by Rizvi's supporters continued in Pakistan, where the country's powerful military uses various tactics to curb press freedom. Pakistan ranks 145th in the Global Freedom Index, according to a report released by Borders Without Reporters, which says it is among the countries where the military and agencies control journalists.


The report says that the majority of the media outlets are following the red lines imposed by the military. However, it added that "Pakistani censorship apparatus is still struggling to control social media, it is the only place where a few critical voices can be heard."


Pakistani security forces ended almost all sit-ins in a series of operations, but Rizvi's supporters are battling in Lahore, the capital of the eastern province of Punjab, where they attacked a police station over the weekend. After talks with the government, supporters took 11 police officers hostage and released them on Monday.


Ahmed said his government would continue talks with Rizvi's group and would share more details on Tuesday.


The latest development came a day after Khan, in a televised address defending his decision to expel the French ambassador, said it could affect Pakistan's trade relations with the European Union.


The tensions stem from last year's remarks by the French president, who defended freedom of expression, as a satirical newspaper published a photograph of the Prophet of Islam, Akram Carr, all over the world. It was condemned.


Rizvi's party supports the country's controversial blasphemy laws and has a history of violent rallies to influence its government.


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