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Sources revealed that despite the two-hour long discussion, no decision was reached while Islamabad police and administration advised against another operation against Faizabad sit-in including devotees of Sunni Tehreek and Tehreek-e-Labaik.

The Pakistani government has called on the army to restore order in Islamabad and disperse anti-blasphemy protesters who have been demonstrating in the capital for the past fortnight. Reports say scores of protesters and police personnel have been injured in the clashes.

DawnNews reported that protesters tried to break into the residence of former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan in Faizabad.

More than 8,000 personnel of police and paramilitary Rangers and Frontier Constablary launched the crackdown to clear Faizabad interchange linking Islamabad with garrison city of Rawalpindi and the only global airport of the capital. The government puts the issue down to a clerical error.

The protesters, who before Saturday numbered some 2,000 people, are demanding that federal law minister Zahid Hamid resign over a hastily-abandoned amendment to the oath that election candidates must swear.

Police have also used water cannons to disperse the protesters after the capital was paralysed due to the sit-in which has been ongoing for nearly three weeks.

According to reports, dozens of protesters have been detained.

It may be mentioned here that the government resorted to quelling the disturbance through force, only after several deadlines to the leaders of the protest to end the sit-in had lapsed. Lahore's entry and exist points have been blocked by the protesters. The media blackout was followed by suspension of services of popular social networking sites - Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Ahsan Iqbal said that protesters had been holding Twin Cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi hostage for last 20 days, adding that few elements were misleading innocent minds. Traffic jam has choked arteries near Data Darbar.

A military spokesman said that army chief General Qamar Caved Bajwa talked to Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on telephone and urged for peaceful solution to the problem.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Electronic Media Regulating Authority (PEMRA) has issued coverage notice for electronic media and all satellite TV channels.


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