Pakistan: Peshawar police refuse to provide security to candidates ahead of general elections

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Islamabad [Pakistan], February 3: Ahead of the February 8 general elections to be held in Pakistan, the Peshawar police has decided not to provide security to electoral candidates.
According to the details, the Peshawar police recommended that electoral candidates hire security guards from private security companies. However, the police have agreed to provide security to the election candidates during their campaigns and rallies.
The police cited the lack of security personnel the reason behind refusing to provide security to the security personnel, as most of the police personnel will be placed in the polling booths during the polls, according to ARY News report.
This development comes after Pakistan’s Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) released a list of political figures that received threats before the upcoming general elections, the report said.
The list released by CTD includes 15 political leaders from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. These threatened political leaders include Member of National Assembly (MNA) Mohsin Dawar, Ex-provincial minister Imtiaz Qureshi, Senator Hidayatullah, former PML-N MNA Amir Maqam, former PTI MNA Pir Mansoor Shah and Shah Muhammad. JUI-F’s Malik Adnan Wazir and Ehsanullah, Senator Bakhti Afsar, and Senator Maulana Abdur Rasheed, the reprot said.
The Peshawar police’s decision comes at a time when several people have been killed and severely injured in a series of violent blasts in various cities of the country. The wave of violence began in Balochistan’s Sibi when four people were killed and five others were wounded injuries in a blast that took place near political rally at Jinnah Road Sibi on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, a 12-year-old boy was killed while three others were injured in a clash between the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) in Karachi, ARY News reported, citing police sources.
According to the police, the clash between the MQM-P and PPP workers in New Karachi Sector 11-J left a 12-year-old boy dead while three others were wounded in the firing incident.
The police said activists of both parties came face-to-face during election campaigning in the area. The supporters of both sides initially exchanged heated words before the argument escalated to a fatal clash, as per ARY News report.
The incident comes as the third reported clash between the parties, as an MQM-P activist was also killed in a similar incident in the Nazimabad area of Karachi last Sunday.
Recently, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has put half of the polling stations of the country in ‘sensitive’ or ‘most sensitive’ categories, ARY News reported citing sources. Citing ECP sources, the report stated that overall 90,675 polling stations have been set up across the country for the upcoming general elections.
In addition to this, 46,065 polling stations have been declared as ‘sensitive’ or ‘most sensitive’ across the country. The ECP has declared 27,628 polling stations as sensitive and 18,437 as most sensitive, according to sources.

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