Massive Pro-Khan Rallies Sweep Pakistan On Eve of New PM Vote

The Cradle the Pakistani parliament gears up to elect a new prime minister to replace the freshly ousted Imran Khan, massive protests swept the nation with thousands rallying in favor of Khan and against what many have called a foreign conspiracy spearheaded by the US.

Multiple cities erupted in protests on the night of 10 April in support of the ousted PM and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) political party, including in Islamabad, Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Karachi, and Lahore.

“In a democratic system the final voice will be the voice of the people. And the voice is the people is Imran Khan,” Ambareen Turk, a local PTI activist told Reuters from the protest in Islamabad.

Pakistani expats living in West Asia also joined in on the protests, with rallies taking place in Dubai.

The parliament will meet on 11 April to elect a new prime minister.

The leading opposition figure is Shehbaz Sharif, the younger brother of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, who had been jailed on corruption charges.

Khan’s PTI, meanwhile, has nominated Shah Mahmood Qureshi, the former foreign minister of Pakistan, for the post. PTI threatens to resign from the parliament en masse if Qureshi loses.

A massive resignation such as that would likely lead to new elections.

Only a few minutes after midnight on 10 April, the parliament of Pakistan held a no-confidence vote to oust Prime Minister Imran Khan. The vote was held successfully, with the majority of MPs in favor of ousting Khan from office.

Khan has accused the opposition of conspiring with “foreign powers” to remove him from office because he would not comply with western demands to stand against Russia and China.

Pressure on Khan started after 6 March, when he made headlines for criticizing western powers for pressuring Islamabad into condemning Russia’s military actions in Ukraine.

“What do you think of us? Are we your slaves … that whatever you say, we will do?” Khan said at a political rally.

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