A Pakistani court has sentenced former Prime Minister Imran Khan and one of his party deputies to 10 years in jail, on accusations of them “disclosing official secrets,” following a crackdown on his political party shortly before the upcoming elections.
Critics have accused the government of issuing the sentence a few weeks before the elections. An insider said to TMJ News that the move is “a quest to curb the turnout which will help them to easily manipulate the results.”
Imran Khan, was removed through a no-confidence vote in April 2022, and is presently serving a three-year prison term after he was accused of “corruption.” According to officials, Khan and his deputy, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, do have the option to appeal the recent ruling in the Cipher case.
Khan still retains political influence following mass support of Pakistanis, especially after his refusal of succumbing to US demands for military bases in Pakistan, as well as his staunch pro-Palestine stance.
The independent human rights commission in Pakistan is concerned about “pre-poll rigging,” in the parliamentary elections next month, expressing the worry over the rejection of candidacies, which include Khan and other senior members of his party.
The allegations against Khan surfaced when he allegedly revealed a confidential document during a rally, calling it as evidence of threats and “asserting a US conspiracy.”
The document, entitled as Cipher, has not been publicly revealed by the government or Khan’s lawyers.
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