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Lahore: Pakistan's Punjab province interim government gave a 24-hour ultimatum to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) to hand over "30-40 terrorists who have taken refuge" in former Prime Minister Imran Khan's Zaman Park residence in Lahore, Geo News reported.
Addressing a press conference in Lahore, the caretaker information minister Aamir Mir said, "PTI should hand over these terrorists or the law will take its course." He also added that the government was aware of these "terrorists" as it had credible intelligence reports.
"The intelligence report that has come is very alarming," said Mir and adding that the agencies were able to confirm the presence of the "terrorists" in Zaman Park through geo-fencing.
He further stated that PTI has started behaving like a non-state actor and its party chief has been targeting the military for over a year, according to Geo News.
"The PTI leadership had planned the attack before the arrest [of Imran Khan]," said Mir.
The interim information minister shared that attacks on military installations were carried out during May 9 violent protests under a set plan, adding that the government has adopted a "zero tolerance policy" towards it and interim Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi has given a "freehand" to the Punjab Police to deal with "arsonists".
While responding to a question, he said that the attack on Jinnah House could have been easily prevented, but the caretaker CM had barred the police from using weapons. "We wanted to avoid bloodshed in the province."
"Several arsonists were in touch with people inside Zaman Park during the attack on the Corps Commander House. They will be made an example so that no one will carry out such an act in the future," Geo News quoted Mir as saying.
The interim information minister further added that the government has decided that those who attacked military installations will be tried in military courts.
Khan's arrest by the paramilitary troops, on the directives of the National Accountability Bureau, in Islamabad on May 9 sparked clashes between his supporters and security forces that left at least eight people dead. Scores were arrested, including the PTI leader's close aides and political associates, reported Geo News. (ANI)