Imran Khan’s government has come under fire from rights groups within and outside the country since he came to power in 2018. Islamabad, Pakistan – In a new annual report, international human rights organisation Human Rights Watch (HRW) has lambasted the Pakistani government for expanding a crackdown on dissent by citizens, journalists and opposition politicians. HRW, which is based in the United States, released its annual World Report 2022 on Thursday, with the chapter on Pakistan focusing on freedom of expression and religion, women’s rights and alleged abuses by Pakistan’s police and security forces. “The authorities expanded their use of draconian sedition and counterterrorism laws to stifle dissent, and strictly regulated civil society groups critical of government actions or policies,” reads the opening of the Pakistan chapter. “Authorities also cracked down on members and supporters of opposition political parties.” Pakistan’s foreign ministry has not responded to the report’s allegations. Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government has come under fire from rights groups within and outside the country since he came to power in 2018 general elections whose results were contested as being fraudulent by some opposition parties. Since coming to power, Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-led coalition government has gone after the opposition in a number of corruption cases, with the party saying it is carrying out an accountability drive to bring the corruption of past governments to justice. Simultaneously, Pakistani journalists and news organisations have reported coming under stricter control from the government and the country’s powerful military, which has directly ruled Pakistan for roughly half of its 74-year history. Journalists critical of the government have been abducted, assaulted, shot or charged with sedition and other alleged crime . . . read the full article here.