The French Embassy has advised all French nationals and companies to temporarily leave Pakistan as violent anti-France protests paralyse the country.
“Due to the serious threats to French interests in Pakistan, French nationals and French companies are advised to temporarily leave the country,” the embassy said in an email to French citizens.
“The departures will be carried out by existing commercial airlines.”
Anti-French sentiment has been simmering for months in Pakistan since the government of President Emmanuel Macron expressed support for a magazine’s right to republish blasphemous caricatures depicting Holy Prophet (PBUH).
On Wednesday, the Pakistani government moved to ban the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) whose leader had called for the expulsion of the French ambassador.
Saad Rizvi was detained hours after making his demands, bringing thousands of his supporters to the streets in cities across Pakistan.
Violent countrywide clashes have led to the death of at least three cops and hundreds of other casualties from both the police and protesters.