ISLAMABAD — Hundreds of Islamic extremists who earlier violently protested in Islamabad over the hanging of a man who killed a secular governor continued their demonstrations in Pakistan’s capital on Tuesday, despite warnings from the government targeting extremists.
The rally by Pakistan’s Sunni Tehreek group saw more than 10,000 protesters enter Islamabad on Sunday, damaging buildings and bus stations. On Tuesday, local police official Mohammad Kashif said some 700 remained, bringing the most sensitive parts of the capital to a standstill.
The protesters are demanding Pakistan strictly enforce Shariah, or Islamic, law, after the hanging of police officer Mumtaz Qadri, who killed Gov. Salman Taseer in 2011. The group also demands a Christian woman named Aasia Bibi, who is accused of blasphemy and who Taseer supported, be hanged.
Tuesday’s sit-in continued despite Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s overnight warning that his government will fight extremists. His comments followed the massive suicide bombing that targeted Christians gathered for Easter in Pakistan’s eastern city of Lahore, an attack that killed 72 people.