ISLAMABAD: Pakistani government and banned group Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) reached agreement after protracted negotiations after days of violent protests by party members demanding release of party leader and expulsion of the French Ambassador, appointed the negotiating team by Prime Minister Imran Khan announced on Sunday.
Prime Minister Khan on Saturday tasked a group of influential clerics with talks with the TLP, whose tens of thousands of members began marching to Islamabad from Lahore on October 15 after the government said it could not. respond to his request for the expulsion of the French. ambassador.
The announcement of the deal was made during a press conference attended by Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Speaker of the National Assembly Asad Qaiser, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ali Mohammad Khan, l religious scholar Mufti Muneebur Rehman and TLP members Mufti Ghulam Abbas Faizi and Mufti Mohammad Ameer.
“The government of Pakistan and the TLP had a detailed discussion in an atmosphere of mutual trust, and an agreement was reached between the two parties,” said Mufti Muneeb, who led the talks on behalf of the government, as quoted by the government. Dawn log.
“The deal was made after common sense won over aggression, rationality won over feelings, and everyone involved showed patience,” he said.
He did not provide any specific details of the deal, however, saying they will be shared at an “appropriate time.”
He said the deal was no victory for any individual and the talks were free from coercion.
Mufti Muneeb also thanked the Prime Minister for empowering the committee and trusting him to resolve this matter.
He said the deal was also approved by TLP chief Saad Rizvi.
According to sources, the cleric met Rizvi and convinced him to end the protests to prevent bloodshed.
According to an article in The Express Tribune, the delegations held a 12-hour meeting to successfully settle the case between the two sides.
A steering committee, headed by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Khan, has been formed to implement the terms of the deal, according to the report citing the cleric.
Foreign Minister Qureshi, at the press conference, thanked all religious scholars, who took part in the negotiations, for playing a positive role in defusing the tension.
He said the National Security Committee (NSC) decided to prefer talks and resolve the issue through talks.
“In light of the prime minister’s orders and considering the nation’s interest, we realize that the powers that want to harm Pakistan could have benefited (from the protests),” Qureshi said.
Meanwhile, TLP workers continued their sit-in in Wazirabad for a third straight day on Sunday, Dawn reported.
Internet and rail services remain suspended in Gujranwala, about 220 km from Islamabad, due to the protest.
The TLP, which was established in 2015, began its protest to force the government to release Rizvi and expel the French ambassador to protest the publication of blasphemous cartoons in France last year.
The son of the founder of the TLP, the late Khadim Rizvi, Saad Rizvi, has been detained by the government of Punjab since last April under the maintenance of public order (MPO) following the party’s protest against the blasphemous cartoons published in France and his request for the dismissal of the French ambassador. and the importation of goods from that country be prohibited.
Nineteen people, including 11 TLP employees and eight police officers, have lost their lives since clashes erupted between the TLP and the police.
Security officials in Pakistan were shocked, according to reports on Saturday, after it emerged that TLP members allegedly used machine guns (SMGs) against police officers during anti-government protests, prompting authorities to conclude that die-hard Islamists had been transformed into a “militant group”.