Pakistan security forces pause Imran Khan's arrest

STORY: Pakistani security forces withdrew from around Imran Khan's home on Wednesday (March 15), after a court ordered them to suspend an operation to arrest him.

Clashes had erupted between police and Khan's supporters after officials tried to detain the former prime minister.

Security forces had fired tear gas and water cannons at hundreds of Khan's supporters who had cordoned off his home in an effort to prevent his arrest.

Police say a court in Islamabad ordered Khan's arrest for not appearing before it despite repeated summons in relation to selling state gifts given by foreign dignitaries during his premiership.

Pakistan's election commission found him guilty in the matter and now a criminal inquiry is under way. Though Khan says he broke no rules.

Police and other security personnel were seen leaving the Lahore neighborhood where Khan's home is located on Wednesday.

A senior police official said the operation to arrest Khan had been paused to accommodate a cricket tournament in the Pakistan Super League being played at a stadium nearby.

Khan accused the incumbent government of attempts on his life in a video released by his party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.

His life was in danger, he said, claiming that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah and an intelligence agent had planned tear gas shelling on his home.

After forces withdrew, Khan was seen standing outside his home, wearing a gas mask and talking to supporters.

The violence has added to the instability in the country, which is struggling with an economic crisis and awaiting an International Monetary Fund bailout.