Protest by Afghan nationals outside Pakistan High Commission in London turns violent as the demonstrators attack Pakistani reporters and a student.
An Afghan national group by the name of “The Watan Group” had organized a protest outside the Pakistan High Commission, London on Friday afternoon to seek justice for the daughter of the Afghan ambassador to Pakistan who was allegedly kidnapped in Islamabad two weeks ago. Around 50 protestors took part and raised slogans against Pakistan.
Incident of violence occurred when a protestor punched a Pakistani News reporter and hit his phone while filming the protest. Immediately after that, this reporter called the police and informed them of the attack.
Read more: How India lost Afghanistan to Pakistan?
Similarly, a Pakistani student Ehtesham Hasan, 20, was also attacked by the Afghan protesters. While speaking to the media on the encounter Hasan elaborated how he was just explaining to the Afghans about the hospitality Pakistan has shown to Afghan refugees over the years and how they have constantly created problems and have been the cause of bloodshed in Pakistan. “Since they didn’t have a valid argument so they started to attack me physically.”
Hasan was visiting the embassy to get his certificates attested when he was cornered by the protestors.
— Khabarwalay (@khabarwalay0) July 23, 2021
Police arrived on the scene after over 40 minutes during which another Pakistani news reporter was attacked by 5 men from the Afghan side who broke the logo and mic of the reporter and beat him up in the presence of witnesses.
Around a dozen Scotland Yard officers reached the protest venue after a complaint was made to the police about the attack. The police took statements from the reporters.
The police then watched the CCTV camera footage and confirmed that a violent attack had taken place and that it was unprovoked. The protestors were later dispersed and crime reference numbers were given to the victims of the attack.
CCTV footage of the protest turning violent pic.twitter.com/9lO4zUZesA
— Murtaza Ali Shah (@MurtazaViews) July 24, 2021
When the Watan’s Group organizer was asked about the mismanagement and chaos caused during the protest he commented that the youngsters were upset over the kidnapping of the Ambassadors daughter and there is little he could do to stop them. When told that it was the organizer’s job to keep the protest in control, he said he cannot comment further.
A spokesperson from Pakistan’s High Commission confirmed that the protest was recorded and the footage has been given to the police who will investigate the matter further.
People on social media reacted on the incident as various videos of the attacks surfaced the internet.
Most of the Pakistanis lauded the young student for staying calm and stating the facts the way it is instead of getting into an argument or fight with the demonstrators.
Others pointed out how a new wave of refugees could become a huge problem for Pakistan and that any leader who fails to stop them will be considered a traitor by the Pakistani people. Examples of Turkey building a wall alongside Iran to stop Afghan refugees from coming into Turkey were also quoted.
Twice poverty stricken Pakistanis shared their hujra & their bread with Afghans. As of 2013 Pak has lost over $200 billion by hosting millions. Destoyed our own social fabric. No more. The third time they will find our hearts & borders closed like they did in 1920. Like today. https://t.co/QQcIkAn5QH
— Asfandyar (@AsfandBhittani) July 23, 2021
Afghans reacted by blaming Pakistan for playing a part in the destruction of Afghanistan by supporting Taliban. However, others also pointed out that these protestors do not represent Afghanistan, rather represent Ashraf Ghani only.