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Ex-PM Imran Khan charged under ‘anti-terror’ law

Islamabad : Pakistan’s police filed terrorism charges against Imran Khan on Monday as the former prime minister organized mass rallies seeking a return to power.

The charges followed a speech Imran Khan addressed in Islamabad on Saturday, in which he vowed to sue police officials and a female judge, and claimed a close aide was tortured after his arrest, media reported. Mr Khan did not immediately address the charges against him.

According to news sources, Mr Khan also accused the government of temporarily blocking YouTube to stop people watching live videos of his speech at a political rally.

Khan was granted a so-called “protective bail” by an Islamabad court for the following three days, prohibiting authorities from detaining him until at least Thursday.

Tensions erupted violently on Saturday when Pakistan’s media watchdog banned television channels from broadcasting live addresses by Khan after his rally in Islamabad.

Rana Sanaullah, the interior minister tweeted, Khan will have to “face the law for threatening and hurling abuses.”

Notably, hundreds of Khan’s supporters gathered outside his hilltop mansion in the capital, Islamabad, on Monday, vowing to prevent his arrest.

The protestors yelled anti-government slogans of the prime minister, Shehbaz Sharif – brother of the jailed former prime minister Nawaz Sharif – which took over after Khan was ousted in a confidence vote in April.