LONDON: An angry mob attempted to attack Nawaz Sharif when he was entering his son’s residence in Avenfield House on Sunday, days after an Islamabad accountability court sentenced the ousted prime minister to 10 years in jail in the Avenfield properties corruption reference.
A video footage available with Dawn shows a group of youngsters trying to break into the building and hurling abuses at Nawaz Sharif. One protester threw a shopping cart at a member of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s UK chapter while another was seen hurling eggs at the door.
In another footage, dozens of people holding the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) flags are seen protesting and chanting slogans outside the building.
Shortly after the incident, the Metropolitan Police reached the luxury housing scheme area and started a search of vehicles parked nearby. They, however, made no arrests, saying the Sharif family had not lodged any complaint.
Maryam sees Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf behind the incident
Maryam Nawaz termed the attack part of what she called an ongoing escalation being propagated by the PTI and its chairman Imran Khan.
“The kind of language being used by Imran Khan himself in his campaign as well as this attack are all part of the same process which indicates a lack of training in the leader as well as his followers,” said Maryam, while talking to journalists on Monday outside Harley Street Clinic where her mother Kulsoom Nawaz is under treatment.
The PTI’s British chapter distanced itself from the attack and said there was no truth in the accusation that the party’s workers were behind the incident.
“We are not associated in any way with the attack on Hussain Nawaz’s residence or the related protest,” the party’s UK spokesperson was quoted as saying by media reports.
Avenfield House has witnessed frequent scuffles in recent days. On July 6, a heated verbal argument ensued between two groups when one was distributing sweets outside the Avenfield House after the accountability court judge convicted Nawaz Sharif, Maryam and her husband retired captain Safdar in the corruption reference. The move angered members of the PML-N’s UK chapter who then broke into a brawl with two men distributing the sweets.
On June 16, a man entered Kulsoom Nawaz’s room allegedly without permission at London’s Harley Street Clinic, sparking alarm among members of the family.
Published in Dawn, July 10th, 2018