The US State Department appears to be setting itself up directly at odds with the protesters in Pakistan’s “long march,” saying they reject the “extra-constitutional” calls by the protesters for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to resign.
Protesters, led by Imran Khan, were initially demonstrating against the refusal of the government to recount last year’s votes in the wake of fraud evidence. The Lahore courts charged Sharif with multiple counts of murder over the weekend for massacring supporters of another protest leader, fueling demands for his immediate resignation and fresh elections.
The State Department insisted they are “monitoring the demonstrations” but oppose Sharif’s ouster, and will continue to support him as the Pakistani premier.
Khan blasted the US comments, saying it wasn’t America’s job to dictate who the real premier of Pakistan was, and saying that Pakistan needs to spurn US influence. He went on to accuse Sharif of being America’s puppet, adding “a friend of the US is a traitor.”