Pakistani protesters attacked TV stations and clashed with police in the southern city of Karachi on Monday, leaving one person dead and eight others wounded, including three media workers, officials said. Supporters of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, known as the MQM, accuse the media of failing to cover a six-day hunger strike protesting the recent arrest of party members.
After a speech Monday broadcast from London by the party’s self-exiled leader, Altaf Hussain, protesters marched on two TV stations and torched three vehicles. Senior police officer Saqib Ismail said police fired tear gas and arrested 12 people. Dr Seemi Jamali at Jinnah Hospital said one person was killed and eight others were wounded, two by gunshots.
The MQM has a history of violent protests and clashes with police and rival political parties in Karachi. The Rangers, a paramilitary force that polices Karachi, later raided the party’s offices and arrested a number of leaders and lawmakers after the army chief, Gen. Raheel Sharif, ordered stern measures against those behind the violence.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who is not related to the army chief, condemned the violence, calling it an attack on press freedoms.