25 injured in Islamabad protests over anti-Islam film (Lead)

September 20th, 2012 - 8:55 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Sep 20 (IANS) At least 25 people, including 15 policemen, were injured in the Pakistani capital and the army had to be called in to contain a massive protest being staged against a controversial anti-Islam US film Thursday, Xinhua reported.

According to Geo News, the Pakistan Army was summoned to protect the red zone and diplomatic enclave in Islamabad from demonstrators. Islamabad’s diplomatic enclave is home to most Western embassies, including the US, British and French missions.

Clashes broke out when thousands of university and college students from the neighbouring Rawalpindi city tried to force into the diplomatic enclave in Islamabad to register their protest at the US embassy over US film “Innocence of Muslims”, reported Samma TV.

Hundreds of heavily armed policemen tried to disperse the protesting mobs with tear smoke but protesting students retaliated with stone-pelting at the police, smashing police vehicles and torching police checkposts.

At least two police checkposts were torched and an unknown number of police vehicles were damaged in the clashes.

When students could not enter the diplomatic enclave, some of them started turning to other places near the diplomatic enclave. Large number of protestors were seen near parliament and a five-star hotel frequented by Westerners.

As protests went on, many other people, including traders and religious people, joined in. The number of the protestors soon swelled to over 10,000, media reports said.

Fearing the situation would spin out of control, the interior ministry reportedly called in the army to maintain order and law in the city.

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