- PTI chief has formed a negotiating team to hold talks with the government
PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif on Saturday rejected PTI Chief Imran Khan's offer to hold talks, saying negotiations are held with politicians, not with a "group of terrorists who burn the memorials of martyrs and set the country on fire."
The development comes hours after the PTI constituted a negotiating team to hold talks with the government on the instructions of party chairman Imran Khan.
The team, comprising Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Pervez Khattak, Asad Qaiser, Haleem Adil Sheikh, Aun Abbasi, Murad Saeed, and Hammad Azhar, will be responsible for formulating a plan of action in relation to the elections and engaging with the government, the notification said.
While speaking to journalists earlier at his Zaman Park residence, Imran Khan said that if he is disqualified or arrested, Shah Mahmood Qureshi will lead the party.
"The time will soon change, and in the coming days, I will give you a big surprise. There is no fight between me and the military," he added.
Earlier in the day, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb said that talks could not be held with those who attacked the state.
Responding to Imran's formation of a committee to hold talks, the information minister said: “Dialogue cannot be held with those who set the country on fire, create chaos and anarchy, fills the minds of masses with hatred, and harbour armed groups.”
She said that Khan was not appealing for negotiations, but seeking an “NRO”.
The development comes following Imran’s arrest on May 9 in a case pertaining to the Al-Qadir Trust. Since Imran’s arrest and subsequent bail, several PTI leaders and supporters have been detained and later released.
Moreover, dozens of lawmakers and senior politicians have left the party. The resignations include founding members, core committee leads, media strategists, and members of the social media teams, all of whom have been seen as crucial to the party.
These include Fawad Chaudhry, Dr Shireen Mazari, Fayyaz Chohan, Firdous Ashiq Awan and many others