Lahore: Amid deepening political crisis in Pakistan, Punjab province Chief Minister and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s brother Shahbaz has left for China with reports suggesting that he may seek Beijing’s support for the embattled PML-N government.

Shahbaz left for China late last night to hold meetings over Chinese investments in the province.

However, reports said he has gone to get support for his brother’s PML-N government which is under pressure from the protesters led by Imran Khan and cleric Tahir-ul-Qadri.

“Shahbaz will ask China to play its role in saving the PML-N government,” a PML-N leader said on condition of anonymity.

China and Pakistan both consider each other “all weather” allies.

Political stalemate in Pakistan has continued for the last 13 days with Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and Qadri’s Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) refusing to budge from their demand of the Prime Minister’s resignation over allegations of rigging in last year’s general election and killing of 14 PAT supporters in Lahore on June 17.

Qadri, who gave a 48-hour ultimatum to Sharif yesterday to step down, warned today that either the government steps down in 23 hours, or blood would be spilled.

“The Sharif brothers should face capital punishment for their crimes,” Qadri said while addressing his supporters.

Thousands of Khan and Qadri supporters are camped out outside the Parliament in Islamabad’s “Red Zone” since last week.

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