KARACHI - Clerics on Thursday called on the government to immediately end the operation in Lyari, asserting that it was not the only option to restore peace.

Speaking at a joint press conference at Binoria Seminary, Mufti Naeem, Dr Fayyaz of the banned Sipah Sahaba Pakistan, Maulana Tariq Madani, social activist Amanullah Ismail held the government and judiciary responsible for the incidents of extortion, targeted killings and terrorism in Lyari.

Mufti Naeem, a supporter of the MQM, said that religious scholars were ready to play a pivotal role for the resolution of the Lyari issue.

He urged the government to give a chance to clerics to resolve the issue through negotiations, saying the operation had adversely impacted the lives of hundreds of thousands of residents of Lyari.

Naeem warned that if the government did not stop the operation, then clerics would be compelled to announce their future line of action.