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Pakistani Police, Protesters Clash In The Streets Of Islamabad

The clashes injured hundreds of people and began as protesters marched on the home of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. The protesters have called for Sharif's resignation.

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The clashes began as the protesters attempted to march on the official residence of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Zohra Bensemra / Reuters

Pakistani authorities used shipping container barriers in an attempt to stop the protesters' advance. The clashes reportedly ignited Saturday when the protesters began removing the barriers.


The protesters are loyal to Tahir ul-Qadri, pictured below, and Imran Khan, two opposition politicians.

Akhtar Soomro / Reuters

On Saturday, ul-Qadri addressed his supporters outside the parliament house. Both he and Khan had said they planned to lead the march on Sharif's home, but a BBC reporter did not see them at the scene.

The protests began Aug. 14 with a march from the city of Lahore to Islamabad. Despite some initial clashes, the Associated Press reported that the protests subsequently were "festive," with the protesters camped outside the parliament building.


Pakistani Defense Minister Khwaja Mohammad Asif later told reporters the police managed to disperse the protesters from the lawn and parking lot of the parliament building.

Islamabad police said the protesters had hammers, wire cutters, and axes, among other weapons. However, ul-Qadri later told the BBC the protesters were unarmed.

Faisal Mahmood / Reuters

The BBC described the protesters as "stone-pelting" and "baton-wielding."

Scores of protesters were injured in the clashes.

AP Photo/http://B.K. Bangash

Local hospitals told the BBC that 264 people were injured, including 26 policemen. The AP reported that more than 300 people were injured, while AFP put the count even higher, at more than 400 people.

Jim Dalrymple is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Los Angeles.

Contact Jim Dalrymple II at

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