Pakistan paramilitary detains 500 ANP activists

Friday, November 26, 2010

KARACHI - Pakistan Rangers paramilitary personnel launched multiple raids in Karachi Thursday evening and detained over 500 activists of the Awami National Party (ANP), which described it as a “target operation”, a media report said Friday.

ANP spokesperson Major Farooq Bilal rejected television reports that said the operation was against terrorists and said the Rangers did not receive any specific threat or intelligence report, The Express Tribune reported Friday.

According to the party’s acting general secretary, Sindh Bashir Jam, around 500 ANP activists were rounded up.

“This is a target operation against the ANP it seems,” Jam said, adding that the party activists were picked up from all Pakhtun-dominated areas of the city.

He said the ANP supports a crackdown against criminals even if they belong to a political party.

“But an operation should not be launched to single out one party,” he said.

Meanwhile, a man named Mohammad Saqib said his 17-year-old brother Aqib and other students of the Habib Public School were allegedly being held by the Rangers.

He was later told that his brother was picked up after two men fleeing the operation jumped into the school building. “They arrested all the young kids inside,” he said.

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