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Saturday, April 17, 2021

Anti-France Demonstrations Disrupt Traffic, Block Major Highway In Islamabad

Pakistan security forces sealed off a major highway in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, as more than 1,000 demonstrators gathered to hold anti-France protests due to perceived Islamophobia.

Pakistan security forces sealed off a major highway in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, as more than 1,000 demonstrators gathered to hold anti-France protests due to perceived Islamophobia.

Protesters from Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), a far-right Pakistani religious political party known for its strong campaign to support the draconian blasphemy laws, caused traffic disruption on the city’s main Faizabad interchange on Monday, a day after situations became violent between the police and demonstrators.

Pakistan authorities used barbed wires and shipping containers to blockade all of the major roads leading to the capital.

The protests were aimed against the French government under the leadership of President Emmanuel Macron.

Mobile phone services across most of Islamabad remained suspended on Monday as police and paramilitary forces attempt to hamper the protesters’ ability to organize.

In recent months, Macron made anti-Islam remarks that enraged several Muslim-majority countries such as Pakistan, Turkey and other nations across the Gulf.

Supporters of the religious group TLP demanded the expulsion of the French ambassador and urged the Pakistani government to end the country’s diplomatic relationships with France.

Macron released a comment, following the beheading of French middle-school teacher Samuel Paty by an Islamic terrorist for showing cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad to his students, hailing the murdered teacher as a “quiet hero”.

“Samuel Paty was killed because Islamists want our future and because they know that with quiet heroes like him, they will never have it,” he said.

In Macron’s recent remarks, he also claimed that the religion of Islam “was in crisis”, as well as defended the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo’s publication of blasphemous caricatures of Prophet Mohammed.

Any depiction of the Prophet is deemed forbidden by the laws of Islam.

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