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Pakistan ex-PM Khan claims government plotted to kill him

Jon Shelton
November 10, 2022

Former Prime Minister Imran Khan told DW he believes the Pakistani government hatched a plan to kill him, although he offered no evidence. He separately urged supporters to continue to protest for early elections.

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, his legs bandaged and elevated, speaks to reporters while seated in a wheelchair
Former PM Khan urged supporters to march on to Islamabad without him after he was shot at a recent rallyImage: K.M. Chaudary/AP/dpa/picture alliance

Pakistan's former prime minister, Imran Khan, told DW in an exclusive interview that the government in Islamabad was trying to kill him because he threatens its grip on power.

"They are threatened. They know elections. They cannot compete. And so their motive was to get me out of the way. They tried other ways. They tried to disqualify me, put terrorism cases on me."

Khan told DW: "The people who are threatened the most, who would want me to be eliminated, is the current government."

Khan, a former national cricket hero who served as Pakistan's prime minister from August 2018 until April 2022, was injured on November 3, while leading a protest for early elections.

Khan sustained three bullet wounds to his leg and thighs in an attack that killed one of his supporters and injured 14 more.

Imran Khan wounded in Pakistan gun attack

Khan claims conspiracy, admits no hard evidence

Khan is convinced that he is the target of a conspiracy between Islamabad and the United States. He told DW the no-confidence vote that saw him ousted from office in April was part of that conspiracy as well as assassination attempts thereafter.

"The plot started two months back. They decided to bump me off by saying that a religious fanatic had killed me," he said. "The people who are threatened the most, who would want me to be eliminated, is the current government."

When pressed by DW for evidence of this plot, Khan said all he had was "circumstantial evidence" at the moment.

Separately, Khan, who was hospitalized after the attack, urged his supporters to continue marching on to Islamabad in an effort to force new elections.

The former prime minister began the trek late last month but was forced to abandon it himself after last week's shooting.

Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Thursday said Pakistan will hold elections in 2023 as scheduled.

Pakistan's government hits back at Khan allegations