Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan was shot in the foot at a rally on Thursday, according to a party official, who said the incident was an assassination attempt.
A bullet hit Khan in the foot after a gunman opened fire, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Umar said.
The former Pakistan cricket captain was taken from the rally site on the outskirts of Gujranwala city for treatment in Lahore.
Police said they arrested a man suspected of firing shots at the rally. The suspect was arrested with a 9 mm handgun and two empty magazines, police said.
At least one person was killed in the incident, according to Faisal Javed, a senior PTI politician and close ally of Khan who received a head injury in the attack. The victim’s name has not been released.
In a video statement, Javed, who can be seen sitting while receiving treatment, said: “Pray for us, for Imran Khan, pray for our fellow workers who are seriously injured and pray for our party member who has died and is martyred.”
At least two other people were wounded by gunfire.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, who came to power after Khan lost a parliamentary no-confidence vote in April, condemned Thursday’s attack on his political rival on Twitter.
“I condemn the incident of firing on PTI Chairman Imran Khan in the strongest terms,” Sharif wrote, adding that he has sought an “immediate report on the incident” and will pray for the recovery of the injured .
“Violence should have no place in our country’s politics,” Sharif wrote.
On 21 October, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) recommended that Khan be disqualified from holding political office for five years, a move that could further increase political tensions in the country.
While reading the recommendation, ECP chief Sikandar Sultan Raja stated that Khan was disqualified for being involved in “corrupt practices”.
The commission said its decision was based on the fact that Khan had “made false statements” about the declaration of the sale of gifts sent to him by the leaders of Saudi Arabia and Dubai while in office, an illegal offence. legal according to the country’s constitution. .
Khan was ousted in a vote of no confidence following claims of poor governance and economic mismanagement.
Since then he has repeatedly claimed, without providing any evidence, that the United States had orchestrated his expulsion. Khan’s allegations have become a staple of the demonstrations he has held across Pakistan in an attempt to return to power.
His claims have struck a chord with a young population in a country where anti-American sentiment is high, and anti-establishment sentiment is being fueled by a growing cost-of-living crisis.
It is not the first time that Pakistani politicians have been attacked.
Former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was assassinated on 27 December 2007, and then Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani survived an assassination attempt in 2008.