In Pakistan, the Supreme Court has ordered the release of arrested former Prime Minister Imran Khan as unrest grows across the country. At least eight people have been killed in protests, though Khan’s party says the death toll is closer to 50. Authorities have detained at least three leaders of Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, and the government has deployed soldiers to quell demonstrations across the country. This is a protester in Peshawar.
Mobeen Khan: “We had come out to protest, but the police fired tear gas shells at us. Then they fired shots at us. This is very cruel. We have come out because they have been cruel to Imran Khan. Also, they have arrested him. Until he is released, our protests will continue.”
Imran Khan has already faced two corruption charges in court this week and had been detained since his arrest Tuesday. Over 100 cases have been filed against him since he was ousted one year ago in a parliamentary vote of no confidence. Khan had described the move as a form of “U.S.-backed regime change” but later placed the blame on the military leadership, saying he wishes to mend ties with the U.S. This all comes as Pakistanis grapple with the worst economic crisis in decades, marked by record-high inflation.