Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has been shot and lightly wounded in
the leg, in an attack on his protest march in the country’s east.
One of Khan’s supporters was killed in the shooting in Wazirabad, officials say.
Several officials of Khan’s PTI party were also injured.
Khan, who has been taken to hospital for medical treatment, was leading a protest
march on the capital, Islamabad, to demand snap elections.
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The former prime minister was seen being taken to a hospital in Lahore. A party
spokesman said he had been hit in the shin.
An official from his PTI party, provincial health minister Yasmeen Rashid, said Mr
Khan was in a stable condition.
Police released a video confession of a man they arrested who they say had attempted
to kill the former prime minister.
It is unclear under what conditions the interview was carried out but in it the man is
asked by police why he opened fire, and replies: “He was misguiding the people.
I wanted to kill him. I tried to kill him.”
Video footage from the scene shows Mr Khan and his supporters riding on top of the
shipping container before a burst of gunfire is heard. Mr Khan is then seen ducking,
as those around him try to cover him.
Another video shows a conscious Mr Khan with a bandage on his right leg being
taken away in a vehicle after the shooting.
A PTI member is also seen with a bandage on his face and blood on his clothing,
saying that people should pray for Mr Khan and all those injured.
“This was an attempt to kill him, to assassinate him,” Mr Khan’s senior aide Raoof
Hasan told AFP news agency.
Current Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif condemned the shooting and ordered an
President Arif Alvi said the incident was a “heinous assassination attempt”.
Mr Khan has been leading a protest march – the second such rally this year – for the
past seven days, calling for new elections.
The government has repeatedly said it will hold elections next year, as planned.
Last month, Pakistan’s election commission disqualified Mr Khan from holding public
office in a case described by the former star cricketer as politically motivated.
He had been accused of incorrectly declaring details of gifts from foreign dignitaries
and proceeds from their alleged sale. The gifts included Rolex watches, a ring and a
pair of cuff links.
Pakistan has a long history of deadly political violence.
In the most high-profile case, former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was assassinated
at a public rally in 2007.