Pakistani Politicians Push Protests Pulverizing Paris President’s ‘Phobia’
French President Emmanuel Macron’s promise to crack down on Islamist extremists following the murder of a Paris schoolteacher continued to reverberate throughout the Muslim world on Monday, as thousands of Pakistani protesters demanded the government sever its ties with France and expel its ambassador. The protesters clashed with local police in the capital of Karachi. The masses, supporters of the hard-line Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) party that has made blasphemy and the recent incident in France its focal point, rallied near government buildings, throwing bricks at police and injuring several officers. TLP called off its protests after the Pakistani government reportedly signed an agreement endorsing a boycott of French goods. But as of Tuesday morning, security forces were still trying to disperse the growing crowds. Pakistan was one of several Muslim countries to express outrage over Macron’s statements, accusing the president of voicing Islamophobic and xenophobic sentiments. After teacher Samuel Paty was beheaded last month for showing a caricature of the Prophet Muhammad in a class on free speech, Macron warned that core French values were under attack and pledged to protect them. Meanwhile, Iraq on Monday executed 21 men convicted of terrorism, as the country continues its cleansing of suspected ISIS soldiers and sympathizers, rejecting claims by human rights groups of undue process.