There will be no armed militias in Pakistan: NSA

TLP long march caused martyrdom of policemen, public chaos, plus destruction of property, says Moeed Yusuf

National Security Adviser Moeed Yusuf has warned that legal action would be taken against the banned Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) as there would be no tolerance for ‘armed militias’ in the country.

In a tweet on Thursday, Yusuf said that TLP had ‘crossed the red line and exhausted the state’s patience and for that it would dealt with strictly. In their long-standing protest, Yusuf said that TLP caused policemen to lay down their lives, in addition to causing chaos and destruction of public property. The state, Yusuf added, would not hold back on sheltering its citizens from violence.

Moeed warned, “For all individuals and groups who think they can challenge the writ of the Pakistani state, do not test the proposition.”

Yusuf’s statement came a day after Federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said that the government would treat TLP as a ‘militant party’ instead of a political one. The government’s renewed stance surfaced after violence between protestors and security personnel ensued on Wednesday. At least four policemen were martyred, while over 250 people were injured when TLP workers clashed with authorities near Sadoke in Gujranwala district, Punjab.

Before Chaudhry’s announcement, Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed in a press conference in Islamabad on Wednesday said that Rangers had been called in to maintain law and order for 60 days in Punjab.