Supporters of the radical religious party Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah, chant religious slogans at a sit-in protest in Islamabad, Pakistan, Monday, Nov. 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Anjum Naveed)
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Pakistan's law minister resigned Monday after the embattled government bowed to demands from a small Islamist group, striking a deal with the help of the military to end a weekslong anti-blasphemy protest.Khadim Hussain Rizvi and his supporters from the once-obscure Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah Pakistan (TLY) group had paralyzed the capital since Nov. 6 with just 2,000 demonstrators, enraging millions of commuters and the judiciary who blasted the government for hesitating to act against them.Analysts said the capitulation to Rizvi and his supporters was an unsettling sign of the influence even marginal religious groups wield in Pakistan and an embarrassment for the government before elections due in 2018 .Gen. Faiz Hameed, among others, spurred the Islamabad High Court to demand the government give a full accounting of the army's role in the deal.Analysts said the government had been so undermined it had been left with no option but to seek the help of the army, widely seen as the most powerful institution in Pakistan.
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