Thursday, April 18, 2024

Pakistan slaps travel ban on Imran Khan, his wife and hundreds of party leaders

Pakistan’s government has restricted former Prime Minister Imran Khan, his wife and hundreds of leaders and members of his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party from travelling abroad amid a PTI standoff with the country’s military, officials have confirmed.

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), responsible for immigration and border control, put Khan’s name on the no-fly list, at least two officials confirmed to dpa news agency on Friday.

Khan’s wife, Bushra Bibi, and more than 500 leaders and members of his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party have also been added to the list, officials said.

“It is a standard practice in every case. All those who face court cases are barred from leaving the country,” one of the officials told dpa.

Khan on Friday “thanked” the government for putting him on the no-fly list.

“I have no plans to travel abroad, because I neither have any properties or businesses abroad nor even a bank account outside the country,” he tweeted in an apparent dig at politicians belonging to Pakistan’s ruling alliance who allegedly own homes abroad.

Khan’s government, between 2018 and 2022, also barred several opposition leaders from flying abroad.

The move against Khan comes as legal challenges mount for the 70-year-old former cricket star, weeks after his supporters stormed key military installations including the army headquarters in protests against his arrest on May 9.

Dozens of former PTI legislators have distanced themselves from Khan since and more than 4,000 of his supporters – including PTI leaders and journalists – have been arrested in a nationwide crackdown.

Khan’s government, between 2018 and 2022, also barred several opposition leaders from flying abroad.

The move against Khan comes as legal challenges mount for the 70-year-old former cricket star, weeks after his supporters stormed key military installations including the army headquarters in protests against his arrest on May 9.

Dozens of former PTI legislators have distanced themselves from Khan since and more than 4,000 of his supporters – including PTI leaders and journalists – have been arrested in a nationwide crackdown.

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