10/13/2017, 15.05
PAKISTAN
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Islamabad, election commission bans 'terrorist' party

The Milli Muslim League was launched in August as a "clean face" of an Islamist group banned by the government. The latter is covering an al-Qaeda-affiliated armed movement. "To prevent militants from entering the political arena with democratic means."

Islamabad (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Pakistan's Election Commission rejected the request for enrollment in the polls of the new Milli Muslim League (Mml) political party because of its explicit ties with a long-established Islamist terrorist group. The political formation can no longer participate in any electoral, state or general election consultations.

Experts point out the importance of the decision and recall that the MML party was launched last August as the "clean face" of the Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) "charitable" organization, banned by the Islamabad government. The latter is the cover of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorist armed al-Qaeda leader. LET chief is Hafiz Saeed, accused of being the planner of the 2008 terrorist attacks in the Indian city of Mumbai, that killed more than 160 people. The UN judges the man a terrorist; since 2012, the United States has placed a bounty of $ 10 million on his head; since January this year he is under house arrest in Lahore, under local laws against terrorism.

Minister of State for Home Affairs Tallal Chaudhry , specifies that "under no circumstances will [the government] allow a political party with proven involvement in promoting violence and terrorism to spread its extremist ideology through democracy and political means."

The Milli Muslim League already ran in elections in September when Nawaz Sharif, ex-premier exonerated by the Supreme Court, left a vacant seat in Lahore. On that day, the party-backed candidate ranked fourth. To the news of the result, many have expressed concern over the progressive affirmation of militant groups in Pakistan's political arena. Observers described the ability to collect consensus in such a short time as "alarming", succeeding in mobilizing a sufficient number of votes to produce a credible challenger.

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