3 Shia pilgrims killed by Taliban / Sipah-e-Sahaba’s Quetta Shura

QUETTA, Pakistan — Gunmen in southwestern Pakistan opened fire on pilgrims bound for Iran on Friday, killing three Shiite Muslims and wounding seven others, in what police said was a sectarian attack.

Four people riding two motorbikes sprayed bullets on the pilgrims when their bus stopped near a restaurant, near Hazar Gangi bus station, on the outskirts of Quetta, the main city in the insurgency-hit province of Baluchistan, local police chief Asif Sheikh said.

“Three people including a woman were killed and six others wounded,” he told AFP. The assailants managed to escape.

The pilgrims from the minority Shiite community had left the southern port city of Karachi and were heading through Baluchistan to Iran to visit holy sites, senior police officer Zaman Tareen said.

“It was a sectarian attack. The victims were Shiite Muslims,” he added.
Hundreds of people have died in oil and gas-rich Baluchistan since late 2004, when rebels rose up demanding political autonomy and a greater share of the profits from the province’s abundant natural resources.

Impoverished Baluchistan, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, has also been troubled by Islamist and sectarian violence.

Shiites account for about 20 percent of Pakistan’s population, which is mainly Sunni. The groups usually coexist peacefully but outbreaks of sectarian violence have claimed more than 4,000 lives across Pakistan since the late 1980s. The predominantly Deobandi / Wahhabi militants of the Taliban / Sipah-e-Sahaba consider Shias as infidels and condone their killing.

Source: AFP and Samaa



Latest Comments
  1. Sarah Khan