Fawad Chaudhry, close collaborator of Imran Khan, leaves the PTI party

ISLAMABAD: In another blow to ousted Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, his close aide and former information minister Fawad Chaudhry resigned on Wednesday from his party which is under government pressure following the May 9 violence.
Chaudhry’s resignation came a day after former human rights minister Shireen Mazari quit the 70-year-old Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party and condemned the actions of supporters of the former prime minister who attacked and set fire to sensitive defense installations across Pakistan. May 9.
“My previous statement in which I unequivocally condemned the incidents of May 9, I have decided to take a break from politics, therefore, I have resigned from the party position and part ways with Imran Khan “, he tweeted.
Chaudhary served as Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting and Minister for Science and Technology during his government. He was senior vice-president of the PTI and spokesperson for the party.
Mazari, 72, announced her resignation and retirement from active politics after being released following her arrest for the fourth time since May 12, when she was taken from her home by police and sent to prison in connection with the violence of May 9.
She served as human rights minister from 2018 to 2022, under the Khan regime.
On May 9, violent protests erupted after paramilitary Rangers arrested Khan at the premises of the Islamabad High Court (IHC).
Members of his party vandalized a dozen military installations, including the corps commander’s house in Lahore, Mianwali air base and the ISI building in Faisalabad in response to Khan’s arrest.
The Army Headquarters (GHQ) at rawalpindi was also taken over by the crowd for the first time.
Police have killed 10 people in violent clashes while Khan’s party says 40 of its staff lost their lives in gunfire from security personnel.
Thousands of Khan’s supporters have been arrested in the wake of the violence that the mighty military has called a “black day” in the country’s history.
Several senior PTI leaders, including Chaudary and Mazari, were arrested following the unrest.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said on Sunday that those implicated in attacks on military installations would be tried in military courts while those accused of attacks on civilian targets would be prosecuted under civilian laws.
Pakistani Defense Minister Khawaja Asif said on Wednesday the government was considering a possible ban on Khan’s PTI party following attacks by its supporters on military installations following the former prime minister’s arrest.
Khan was ousted from power in April last year after losing a vote of no confidence in his leadership, which he said was part of a US-led plot targeting him because of its independent foreign policy decisions on Russia, China and Afghanistan.


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