Pakistan temporarily closed some of its land borders and turned off mobile phone service on Thursday, to increase security for voters in a general election that has been preceded by a spike in militant violence.
“A ministry spokesman said in a statement that the decision has been made to temporarily suspend mobile service throughout the nation.”
“Government Deploys Thousands of Soldiers to Polling Places Nationwide After Terrorist Attacks”
Thousands of soldiers will be stationed at polling places across the nation by the government as a result of two explosions near election offices that occurred on Wednesday in the southwestern province of Balochistan. The Islamic State later claimed responsibility for both explosions.
It also comes after imprisoned former Prime Minister Imran Khan urged his followers to wait outside polling places until the results were in. Khan’s followers battled with the military and looted multiple government buildings last year in an attempt to stop him from being taken into custody.
“As a result of the recent incidents of terrorism in the country precious lives have been lost, security measures are essential to maintain the law and order situation and deal with possible threats,” the interior ministry stated on X.
“Interior Ministry Establishes Control Room to Monitor General Elections Amid Internet Access Issues”
A control room has been established by the caretaker Interior Ministry to monitor the overall state of the general elections. Representatives from a number of pertinent organizations, such as the police, the Interior Department, and the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), are present in this control room and are assigned specific tasks.
When polls opened at 8:00 am (0300 GMT), AFP journalists in the nation’s capital of Islamabad were unable to access mobile internet services. There were also reports of spotty access in Karachi, a city in the south.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the twin bombings outside the offices of candidates in southwest Pakistan on Wednesday, which left at least 28 people dead.