ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN (BNO NEWS) — At least nineteen people were killed and scores injured across Pakistan as widespread protests against the anti-Islam film turned violent, local media reported Friday.
In the southern port city of Karachi, at least twelve people were confirmed dead with over 110 injured as protesters burnt two banks, five cinemas, as well as a number of shops and vehicles. Protests reached the Chief Minister house where three police vans were also set on fire.
At least two others, including a private TV channel employee, were also killed in Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where protesters ransacked the Chamber of Commerce and burnt two more cinemas.
Angry demonstrators also clashed with police in several areas of the country’s capital, Islamabad. Protesters have been pushing to enter the city’s red zone toward the U.S. consulate, but high security measures have used tear gas to disperse the crowds.
Other affected cities include Lahore and Rawalpindi.
The recent widespread protests in the Middle Eastern region have been sparked by a 14-minute English-language trailer for an amateur movie called “Innocence of Muslims,” reportedly produced in the state of California by a U.S. citizen . The movie, which cost more than $ 5 million to make and has 59 actors, depicts Islam’s Prophet Muhammad as a fraud and feckless philanderer who approved of child sexual abuse. It also includes other insulting claims.
The fresh violence captured worldwide attention after United States ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other diplomats were killed on Tuesday night during an attack against the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi. The attack also injured three other diplomats, and left other people wounded.