KARACHI: A Pakistani man was killed and another injured in a weekend knife attack in a Sydney shopping mall, accor­ding to two local community groups and media reports.

The Australian Pakis­tani National Association and an Ahmadiyya community organisation on Sunday said 30-year-old Faraz Tahir, the mall’s security guard, was killed by a knife-wielding man who also killed five women, AFP reported.

In a post on social media platform X, the Australian high commissioner in Pakistan, Neil Hawkins, said another Pakistani citizen was also injured in the attack.

Australian broadcaster ABC identified the injured man as Taha Umar Khan, who has been hospitalised after the attack.

He suffered knife injuries and was now in stable condition.

In a press release, the Ahmadiyya community in Australia said Faraz settled in Australia after “fleeing persecution in his home country of Pakistan”.

He had only worked a few shifts as a security guard before he was killed, Australian newspaper Sydney Morning Herald reported.

The community’s statement said Faraz was “known for his unwavering dedication and kindness”.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Faraz’s family and loved ones during this difficult time, as well as with all the other victims and their families affected by this senseless act of violence.”

A community member told Guardian Australia that Tahir did not have family in Australia, and the organisation had been informed of his death by the New South Wales state police.

The Australian Pakistani Nat­ional Association encouraged the community to “stand together in soli­darity, offering support and prayers to those grieving and affe­cted by this heartbreaking loss”.

Scentre Group, which owns and operates the mall where the rampage took place, also paid tribute to the deceased security guard, ABC reported.

The group’s Chief Executive Officer Elliott Rusanow said Faraz died “while trying to protect the community”.

“We are devastated by Faraz’s passing and recognise our team member’s bravery and role as a first responder,” he said.

“Our deepest and heartfelt condolences go out to his family and all who are mourning the loss of loved ones,” Mr Rusanow added.

Published in Dawn, April 15th, 2024

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