Former Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan Blames Establishment of Conspiracy to Assassinate Him | CNN


Islamabad, Pakistan

Pakistani ex-Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday blamed the establishment for a plot to assassinate him, saying unnamed agencies were undermining democracy in the country.

A day after surviving a shooting at a political rally outside the city of Gujranwala, in Punjab province, Khan gave a wide-ranging speech at a hospital in Lahore city, where he was recovering from injuries sustained. While in a wheelchair, the cricketer-turned-politician named three high-ranking figures behind the attack.

The former Pakistani leader suffered a fracture to his right leg as a result of stray bullet wounds, Dr. Faisal Sultan to reporters. Sultan showed X-rays showing the fracture in Khan’s right leg, and bullet fragments stuck to both sides of his femur.

Without providing evidence, Khan accused Prime Minister Shabaz Sharif, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah and Major General Faisal, who is a senior intelligence official. CNN is contacting the three men for comment.

Khan first claimed the trio were responsible for the plot on Thursday, in a statement shared by PTI senior leader Asad Umar, who said he had recently spoken with Khan. In a televised address on Thursday, Sanaullah called Khan’s allegations “serious”.

Khan said he knew about the plot to kill him a day before it happened. He also claimed that “agencies were not allowing democracy to function in Pakistan.”

One person died in Thursday’s attack, which injured several others and sparked protests among Khan’s supporters.

Video of the alleged attack shows Khan swinging from an open-topped truck as shots rang out, causing his party members to take cover.

A bullet struck Khan in the leg, said Asad Umar, the senior leader of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), who later added: “Yes, he was shot, there are bullets in his leg, his bone is broken, he was also shot in the thigh.”

A man was arrested Thursday on suspicion of firing shots.

Khan called on citizens to protest the three officials he claims planned his attack until they resign.

“As long as these three men do not resign, you must protest, against dishonesty, you must do a jihad against them, jihad means standing up against injustice,” Khan said on Friday.

Khan said that once he recovers from his shooting attack, he will resume his so-called Long March to Islamabad, calling for early elections. He was on the seventh day of the nationwide tour, which started in Lahore on October 28 and was to end in Islamabad after winding through several Pakistani cities.

It is one of the demonstrations the former Pakistani cricket captain has held since his dramatic ouster as prime minister in a no-confidence vote in April. During that time, he has repeatedly claimed, without any evidence, that the United States was behind his loss of power.

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