9 killed in protests across Pakistan

9 killed in protests across Pakistan
# 21 September 2012 20:26 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA.At least nine people were killed and over 100 others injured in violent protests across Pakistan on Friday against an anti-Islam movie allegedly mocking the Prophet Mohammed, officials said, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

Friday was declared public holiday by the government to express love and reverence for the Prophet Mohammed, but the protests turned into fierce clashes between police and demonstrators.

At least four people including a crew member of a private news channel were killed and over 30 others injured in Peshawar, capital city of the country’s northwest province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as tens of thousands of people rallied against the anti-Islam movie. The protestors tried to enter U.S. consulate in the city and burnt American flags in front of the consulate’s main gate.

The protesters set four cinemas on fire and destroyed several police vehicles. Peshawar Chamber of Commerce and Industries and a bank were also torched by the demonstrators.

The police dispersed the crowd by firing tear gas and warning shots. The protestors pelted stones at the police in return.

In clashes with police in southern port city of Karachi, at least five people including a policeman were killed and 45 others injured. The protestors set ablaze five cinemas, three banks, two restaurants and several vehicles, Sindh provincial Information Minister Sharjeel Memon said.

Over 15,000 protestors took to the street and chanted anti-U.S. slogans. They burnt U.S. flags and effigies of the U.S. filmmaker. The protestors tried to reach the U.S. consulate but they were kept back by the police.

In Pakistani capital of Islamabad, several people including a cameraman of a private TV channel were injured in clashes with police as thousands of protestors marched toward the highly secured Diplomatic Enclave where the U.S. embassy is located.

According to some media reports, the protestors broke into the Diplomatic Enclave and arrived near the French embassy. Police beat protestors with batons and fired tear gas at them.

Security has been heightened and the large contingents of police and Rangers have been deployed across the city.

Several people were injured in Lahore, provincial capital of Punjab. An estimated over 20,000 angry protestors marched towards the U.S. consulate and chanted slogans against the U.S..