Former Pakistan PM Imran Khan To Appear In Court

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Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan was set to appear in court on Saturday as police were entering his home and after he expressed ‘fear of arrest in a standoff’ with the government that has led to intense clashes with his supporters.

Facing a spate of legal challenges, including one that prompted a failed attempt to arrest him on Tuesday, Khan was to address charges in the court in the capital Islamabad of “unlawfully selling state gifts given to him by foreign dignitaries while in office.

Khan says he followed ‘legal procedures’ in acquiring the gifts.

Hours earlier at his home in Lahore, the former cricket legend said “he has formed a committee to lead his party if he is arrested”  Reports said.

He has led nationwide protests after his ouster from power last year and has had a spate of cases registered against him. The police unsuccessfully tried to arrest him on Tuesday.

Arrest Attempt
Police entered his property after Khan arrived in Islamabad for the court appearance. Earlier this week, police and Khan’s supporters clashed outside his home earlier during the arrest attempt.

Khan, who was shot and wounded while campaigning in November, said in an interview the “threat to his life is greater than before” and asserted – without providing evidence – that his political opponents and the military want to block him from standing in elections later this year.

The military and government did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Security was tight around the judicial complex where Khan, 70, was headed in a motorcade surrounded by supporters.

The court has previously issued arrest warrants for Khan in the case as he had failed to appear on previous hearings despite summons.

On his assurance that he would appear on Saturday, the court granted Khan ‘protection against arrest,’ but he said he feared the police and government planned to take him into custody.




Reuters /Shakirat Sadiq

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