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QUETTA: Gunmen shot dead four people from the Shia community on Tuesday, in what appears to be a fresh sectarian attack in Pakistan's troubled southwestern province of Balochistan, police said.

All those killed ran junk and scrap shops in the Kabarhi Market in Quetta, the provincial capital where sectarian and separatist violence is common.

“It was a sectarian attack. Gunmen on motorbikes opened fire on them and drove away,” Asif Ghafoor, a senior police official, told AFP.

The province, which borders Afghanistan and Iran, is plagued by sectarian violence between the minority Shia and majority Sunni community, as well as by Taliban attacks and a separatist insurgency.

Riasat Ali, another police official confirmed the incident and told AFP that the victims were critically injured and died on their way to hospital.

The victims of the shooting were from the Hazara community, the APP said in its report.

Sectarian violence involving Sunni and Shias, who account for around 20 per cent of the population, has killed thousands of people since the late 1990s.

Despite having large reserves of oil and gas, Balochistan remains one of Pakistan's most impoverished provinces, and bomb blasts and attacks on police and security forces are common.

In 2004 Baloch rebels rose up, demanding political autonomy and a greater share of profits from the region's mineral resources. — AFP/APP

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Comments (16)

shafeeq
October 16, 2012 7:41 am
govt is sleeping only earn the money
Pakistan Citezen
October 16, 2012 8:44 am
When Chief Justice takes suo moto notice against such atrocities against Hazra Community?
Abdur Razzaque
October 16, 2012 8:15 am
Where is the govt. and the Law Enforcement Agency who can stop this kind of most unwanted and brotherly bloodshed and countless corruption? Stop it please, otherwise it gonna put the existence in danger. Being a Muslim we are, it is Haram to kill another brother or any body without caste and creed. instead of innocent killing protect your unity and sovereignty first.
Keti Zilgish
October 16, 2012 9:33 am
For the Hazaras (Shias) or any one else to continue expecting the state to protect them is like becoming sitting ducks. By now it should be clear to all of us that self-defense is the only form of security worth relying upon. Its about time the parasitic nature of the state dawns upon all.
Jawid Akbari
October 16, 2012 7:52 pm
Thank you brothers for your nice comments and thanks are due to Dawn.com for its humane and unilateral concern regarding the fate of Hazara minority in Quetta. They are just being perished with government officials just watching their annihilation. I am a Hazara man who have fled the city simply because I could not walk out of my home to buy edibles and interact with people. Life is becoming hellish for the rest of tribesmen living on Almadar Road or Hazara Town. The government is complicit if not involved.
skylark
October 16, 2012 8:32 pm
THIS PROBLEM HAS BEEN STOPPED IN INDIA (SHIA VS SUNNI) THEN WHY IT'S STILL A PROBLEM IN PAKISTAN ? ALL KILLINGS HAVE TO BE CONDEMNED AND STOPPED, NO MATTER MUSLIM OR NON-MUSLIMS
fiaz
October 16, 2012 5:51 pm
one wonder which heaven they been promised for killing, if that is what it takes, then no thank you.
Jawid Akbari
October 17, 2012 8:03 pm
I am a Hazara student studying in Iran but I am scared about the fate of my family and relatives there in Quetta. I have not been able to visit them for the past two years simply because there is no security. I blame the government for its failure to collect weapons and certain elements who have been brainwashed and made ready to kill innocent Hazaras out in the street. To me it definitely seems that the government is complicit in the gradual annihilation of this minority, otherwise it should have taken action to stop the massacre. Pakistan's biggest cantonment is in Quetta yet Quetta is the most insecure place in the world, not to mention Pakistan. Death, murder and blood are becoming regular phenomenon in the streets of a once prosperous city of Pakistan.
Abbas
October 16, 2012 5:23 pm
This is not sectarian killing. It is Terrorism. When our media will wake up to this reality that terroristic actions are one sided and shias are not involved in tit for tat. I pray our media will leave this anti Islamic biased behavior towards their fellow muslims by calling it sectarian incidents or else they are part of this dangerous game plotted by enemies of Islam in the region (who are also so called friends of Pakistan).
J. Ali
October 17, 2012 2:14 pm
There is NO sectarian war between Sunnis and Shias in Quetta. As a respectable organization it is your responsibility not to misinform the public. LeJ terrorists are killing innocent Hazaras and Shias almost on daily basis. Can you give us one single incident of Hazaras killing innocent Sunnis or any other group? Again, it is not sectarian war. It is genocide of one group of people by terrorists supported by the state. It is that simple. Now, for the sake of journalism, would you please say it like it is?
Raja PA
October 16, 2012 1:54 pm
Where can we find the Police, Special Police, Special Branch, ISI, MI, IB, FC and the whole lot of agencies supposed to keep law and order on the borders and within? enjoying so any perks...........
r.s.soni
October 16, 2012 8:54 am
what can cjp do?all the muck in society is to be cleaned by cjp alone. impossible
Syed
October 16, 2012 10:08 am
Dawn is the only Pakistan news network who has mentioned that these were Shias who were mudered. Why this injustice with innocent victim, Why this so called AZAD media is hiding the identity of this sect.something Shia community should think about.
Muhammad Farooq
October 16, 2012 2:03 pm
For how long this country would suffer religious narrow-mindedness of its citizens?
mazharuddin
October 16, 2012 10:17 am
The political parties, claimant having vote bank in localities should bring culprits before the law. No sufficient to condemn only. Till yet no discussions on media about the root causes and its solution? Media should avoid such articles having no logic and reason. People should be harnessed with such Articles having reason, logic and natural justice.
Hussain
October 16, 2012 7:57 am
Statements like ''violence between the minority Shia and majority Sunni community'' is misleading . In Quetta, there is no voilence 'between', its naked agression against one sect i.e the shias, particularly Hazara tribe.
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