The death toll from Pakistan's protests against a US-made anti-Islam film and sacrilegious cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) in France has risen to 23, Press TV reports.
Clashes broke out between enraged protesters and security forces in at least five Pakistani cities on Friday, with police firing tear gas and live rounds to disperse the crowds.
Hundereds of people were also wounded in the violence.
In the capital Islamabad, protesters marched towards the capital’s diplomatic headquarters, demanding the expulsion of the US and French ambassadors to the country.
Thousands more marched on US consulates in the cities of Lahore and Karachi.
In the northwestern city of Peshawar, protesters set two cinemas on fire and attacked several other buildings.
The Muslim world has been boiling with anti-Western sentiments over the past week over a US-made film entitled “Innocence of Muslims” that insults Islam’s holiest figure and attempts to depict Islam as an oppressive religion.
On September 19, French weekly Charlie Hebdo published cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) in yet another proof of the West’s Islamophobia campaign.
On Thursday, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) expressed “shock” and “dismay” at the sacrilegious cartoons, warning that the move would "further exacerbate the ongoing turmoil and violence created by the release of the anti-Islam film."
OIC chief Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu further urged the international community to take "serious note of the dangerous implications of hate speech and inciting publications and come out of hiding behind the excuse of freedom of expression.”