Targeted killings: 5 Hazaras, 2 UN workers shot dead

Published: March 29, 2012
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A policeman stands guard at the site of an attack by gunmen in Quetta on March 29, 2012. PHOTO: AFP

A policeman stands guard at the site of an attack by gunmen in Quetta on March 29, 2012. PHOTO: AFP

A boy walks past burning tyres set ablaze by protesters in reaction to a shootout by unidentified gunmen in Quetta March 29, 2012. Seven people lost their lives in two separate incidents of firing by some unknown armed men early morning on Thursday in Quetta, local media reported. PHOTO: REUTERS A policeman stands guard at the site of an attack by gunmen in Quetta on March 29, 2012. PHOTO: AFP Van carrying families of Hazara community was en route to Marriabad when group of armed men opened fire on them. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

QUETTA: At least five people were gunned down, and six others sustained injuries, when a van carrying people belonging to the Hazara community was ambushed on Spini road in Quetta Thursday morning.

Law enforcement agencies and the police put security on high alert in the city after the incident.

According to a senior police official, the van was on its way to Marriabad from Hazara Town when a group of armed men opened indiscriminate fire near Killi Mubarak.

Five people, including a woman, died on the spot while six other were wounded.  The assailants fled the scene after the incident.

A heavy contingent of police and security forces reached the spot and cordoned off the area to collect evidence.

The bodies and injured were shifted to Provincial Sandeman Hospital and Bolan Medical Complex where an emergency had been declared. The injured were later shifted to Combined Military Hospital.

Policeman killed in protests

The incident sparked protest in different parts of the city, especially in areas dominated by the Hazara community on Brewery Road.

Protestors shot at security personnel, killing one policeman, Mukham Raza, and injuring a protestor.

Government Girls College Quetta College on Brewery Road was set alight, and fire brigades were called in to extinguish the blaze that engulfed the outer wall of the college building.

Protesters also intercepted two motorbikes and torched them.

The Hazara Democratic Party called for a shutter-down strike in Quetta on Friday (today) to protest the killings. Jamhoori Watan Party, Pashtunkhwa Milli Awami Party and the Awami Nation Party backed the strike call.

A senior police official said that Frontier Corps and police have jointly launched a search operation in different areas of Quetta, including Saryab, and arrested 45 suspects.

No group had claimed responsibility for the attack till the filing of this report.

The government has decided to form an exclusive force for the protection of the Hazara community following frequent incidents of targeted killings last year. Meanwhile, attacks on the community have intensified in the past few days.

2 UN workers shot dead

Two local UN workers were shot dead by unknown assailants in Mastung, about 50km from Quetta.

According to official sources, three persons, identified as Habibullah, Irfan and Mohammad Zahid were en route to Mastung from Quetta when armed men on a motorbike opened fire on their vehicle near Mastung Stadium bypass, killing two of them on the spot. Irfan sustained bullet wounds.

Law enforcement agencies rushed to the spot soon after the incident and cordoned off the area.

“They were working for UN Food and Agriculture Organisation and were coming to Mastung to visit their office,” sources said, adding that the victims were residents of Quetta.

The bodies of the deceased and the injured were taken to Provincial Sandeman Hospital for autopsy and later handed over to the heirs for burial.

Chief Minister Nawab Aslam Raisani strongly condemned the killings in Quetta and Mastung and directed law enforcing agencies to arrest the culprits involved.

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Reader Comments (50)

  • M. A. Changezi
    Mar 29, 2012 - 11:57AM

    Three days and three attacks on people of Hazara community. The imbecile personnel of the government is still turning a blind eye to it. Shame.

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  • maryum
    Mar 29, 2012 - 12:12PM

    Again Shia killing…shame on Govt

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  • Khaliq
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:03PM

    Shame on this Goovernment, on this country than cannot protect its citizens specially the minorities. Why don’t you just arrest extremists who cannot tolerate minorities in Pakistan. Pakistan is not a country under this govt. Shame Shame

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  • A J Khan
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:29PM

    The newspapers should stop using the term “unidentified men”. These unidentified men are very much known however they are shrouded in a mystery. These unidentified men will make a claim after few hours. They are in contact with the media on phones. They send threats through phone. They are seen roaming in the city in darktinted glass cars without number plates and on bogus registerations. We have so much of Police and FC on the roads. We have so many of intelligence agencies, yet they are not reaching to their dens. This is unbelievable.

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  • Shan-e-Haider Changezi
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:33PM

    Another cowardly act against peaceful people of Hazara Community, it seems like govt. itself is involved in such killing as the militants flew after the incident from the law enforcement agencies..Shame on killer Balochistan Govt.

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  • Barkat
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:35PM

    where are we going , where is the government

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  • M.Salman Nisar
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:36PM

    Again Mine Head Bow down with Shame ….

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  • vasan
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:37PM

    Islam is a religion of peace. Muslims are its followers

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  • shaneel ahmed
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:41PM

    This Movement is not ruthless… May ALLAH BLESS HIM

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  • Parvez
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:47PM

    …..and we still do nothing about the Madrassas and their sponsors.Recommend

  • Mar 29, 2012 - 1:56PM

    this killing will not end, unless agencies stop supporting banned organizations……

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  • fahd siddiqui
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:59PM

    hazara community is suffering with the same diseases which is killing mahajir community in Karachi and that diseases is called “TAASUB”

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  • Ahsan Mughal
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:04PM

    this is something which testifies the authority and writ of the government, shameful cowardly act

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  • Mirza Abeer
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:05PM

    Appalling how little the Govt cares for its citizens.

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  • Umer
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:08PM

    So much defence expenditure and so little security.

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  • anon
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:10PM

    Why do u have to photograph people crying – sheesh seriously – how much more is news going to be sensationalize – there are somethings such as this pic which are private ET !!!

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  • Ali Wali
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:13PM

    Evil is always is scared of Righteousness, Salam on all martyres in Quetta, Mola Ameer Al Momneen(AS) will be your witness on the day of judgement.

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  • Yaida
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:21PM

    If this is religion, Pakistan is much better off not having a religion at all ! Who cares about what happens after one passes away? All people need is a decent life with dignity. I am fed up with this religious nonsense !!

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  • Ale Hamdani
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:32PM

    Shame on Govt. and shame on those who say themsleves muslims then r not even human beings…

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  • Anserali Khan
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:35PM

    The government should protect it’s citizens.Why are Hazaras( Shias) been killed at regular interval and government doing nothing to stop this senseless killing

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  • V. C. Bhutani
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:36PM

    If governments in Pakistan go on allowing such killing of non-Sunni Muslims and non-Muslim minorities in different parts of Pakistan, it is a question of time before Pakistan as a project comes unstuck. For one thing, Pakistan has its own definition of ‘Muslim’. Then, it has no patience with non-Muslims any way: their numbers have been reduced to one tenth since Independence. Someone with some farsight will have to arise in Pakistan to tell its people that in this day and age an “Islamic Republic” is an anachronism and shall not last too long. There is hardly a State in the entire world having followers of only one religion or one sect of a religion. Someone needs to do some fresh thinking there. V. C. Bhutani, Delhi, India, 29 Mar 2012, 1506 IST

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  • Alwaysyour
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:42PM

    I am agree with Maryam

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  • Mar 29, 2012 - 3:15PM

    @vasan:

    Islam is the religion of peace. These Muslims are it’s corrupt followers.

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  • Mar 29, 2012 - 3:19PM

    @Parvez:

    Why have the Madrassas to do anything with this? This not a sectarian tension it’s simply an ethnic cleansing of Hazara community by the nationalist Baloch.

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  • Cynical Baloch
    Mar 29, 2012 - 3:47PM

    There is pattern in state terrorism in Balochistan. Baloch, Hazara , Pashtun , Panjapis are all victims of it. Stop playing these games. Targeting UN people is a clear signal to International Human Rights organizations that ‘they’ will make it impossible for anyone to try investigate human rights abuses.
    Stop Killing Hazaras. but no one will listen they will keep playing their dirty game. Shame on the killers of the innocent people.

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  • Harry Stone
    Mar 29, 2012 - 5:10PM

    Unlike Raymond Davis, these people did not have weapons to protect themselves from murders on motorbikes and the results were their deaths.

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  • Patriot Pakistani
    Mar 29, 2012 - 5:41PM

    Pakistan should be declared a secular state and all political parties doing politics on the basis of religion, ethnicity and regions should be banned.

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  • khudadad
    Mar 29, 2012 - 5:58PM

    The security agencies, frontier corps(FC) and police are completely failed to maintain the law and order situation in quetta. Their performance is zerooooooooooo. The gunmen and target killers fire on the innocent people near the FC check post and police station and theY flew away very easily. Quetta is not a big city like karachi where the police and the govt. make false statements that karchi is a big city that’s why they cannot arrest the target killer.IT SEEMS THAT THE GOVT. AND SECURITY AGENCIES ARE THEMSELVES INVOLVED IN THE TARGET KILLINGS OF THE INNOCENT PEOPLE OF HAZARA COMMUNITY.
    SHAME ON THE BALOCHISTAN GOVT.
    WHAT ABOUT THE SUPREME COURT? IT TAKES ACTION ON POLITICAL AND VERY MINOR ISSUES BUT NOT ON TEH TARGET KILLINGS OF HAZARA COMMUNITY.

    SHAME SHAME SHAME ON BALOCHISTAN GOVT.

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  • qamber ali
    Mar 29, 2012 - 6:04PM

    we had enough of these killings.even if we convert to some other religion we will be targeted for being Hazara, Hazaragi speakers. so accept this diversity, if the sectarian problem was not resolved in 1400 years it will not be solved in few more years. To Hazara brothers, please do not destroy the properties of other communities

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  • paki
    Mar 29, 2012 - 7:04PM

    i wonder how naive the members of this hazara community wud be… they are so vulnerable yet they dont carry arms when travelling for their own protection… unless u protest urself this unept govt is not going to protect you, believe me!!!

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  • M Baloch
    Mar 29, 2012 - 7:10PM

    Why ET can’t say they were Shia? Are Hazaras having an ethnic issue with any community? Please realise that they are getting because of their faith. Alwo when we never say Gilgati Shias killed in Kohistan or Seraiki Shias killed in Khanpur, why there is discrimination against Shias of Quetta?

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  • Altaf Hussain Hazara
    Mar 29, 2012 - 7:21PM

    Another unfortunate incident, another crocodiles tears sheared on hazaras death. These country was freed after lots of sacrifices. And was int-anted to be a free state for all its citizens . Where every one would be allowed to practice there religion according to there on believes . Where every one would be given equal chances . Where every one would be equal and every one would have equal rights. But unfortunately today in these beautiful country THE GREAT PAKISTAN Hazaras are not given the basic right of living. They are killed on the bases of cast, on the bases of color, on the bases of sect & on so many other bases. Now a days there is so motto notice fashion. But unfortunately that is also not taken. take so motto notice of law and order situation of Karachi, corruption , sugar , oil prices , and so many other things then why not hazaras killings . OR we are not part of PAKISTAN, we are not PAKISTANI .
    SHAME ON THESE GOVERNMENT
    SHAME ON THESE LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY'S
    SHAME ON THOSE HOW ARE A SILENT ON OUR KILLING
    S
    PHIR BE DIL HAYE PAKISTANI Recommend

  • MUSLIM PAKISTANI
    Mar 29, 2012 - 7:40PM

    @Patriot Pakistani:
    how many parties do u know who have a religious agenda or rule by religion in pakistan? ANP is a nationalist party, MQM is more of an ethnic/racist party, PPP is by far the most secular and liberal party there is, PML N is just good enough to be called a provincial limited party.

    What everyone needs to do is chill out and stop blaming religion, the Hazara community has been a target for ethnic cleansing for a long time, so bringing in this shia-sunni card all of a sudden to discredit the sunnis is shameful and will only instigate more resentment.

    At the end of the day, the government has failed to provide its citizens protection, be they Hazara or Karachiites, or Pashtuns in the tribal belt, Pakistanis. Are. Dying.

    We mourn the loss of our brothers and sisters.

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  • Imran Bhatt
    Mar 29, 2012 - 9:23PM

    Their only crime is that they belong to minority sect, living in Sunni dominated Pakistan. More the Pakistanis identify themselves with religion, more bloodshed they have to endure. Problem with extremists in Pakistan is that they have very few non-Muslims to kill. Therefore, they have to declare others Muslims non-Muslim to satiate their thirst for human blood. Because killing they must and if its not us at the moment, sooner we have no one to call for our protection.

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  • Mar 29, 2012 - 9:36PM

    @MUSLIM PAKISTANI:
    @Afghan Karachiite:

    While true there are Balochi Nationalist militants who do carry out ethnic attacks, there are also fanatical religious terrorists like Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, Jundullah and the Taliban Shura who have been operating out of Quetta, let alone the rest of the country. Hazaras have been easy visible targets of these Wahhabi/Salafi/Deoband/Sunni supremacist anti-Shia hate groups.

    Let’s not be naive and defensive. You ironically fuel credence to the Sunni-Shia card when refusing to recognize the complex reality of extremist threat from majority religious hate groups on non-Sunni minorities due to cognitive bias. PPP, do pander to religious right-wingers for votes, and failed to even provide extra protection to their own non-Muslim minority members who needed it. PML-N, JUI and PTI had their politicians stand with serial sectarian murderer Malik Ishaq. Those are mainstream political parties forming alliances with religious hate groups. Condemning these extremists is not blaming the entire religion, community or every single member. However, when some members of the majority remain in denial, obfuscate, deflect, show apathy, share ideological sympathy or/and even form political alliances with extremists, then it’s hard not to note the growing prejudicial complicity.

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  • hussian changazi
    Mar 29, 2012 - 9:50PM

    with due respect i wanna say that hazaras are have been targeted just because of being hazaras,there is nothing with shias and sunnis,they just wanna show that and try to level the ground for thiere games indicating the shia sunnis fight, i grantee that every hazara thinks a sunn brother as a brother ,there is nothing and no pro with shia sunni.i think every single person of hazaras knows that they are targeted just becasue of being hazara and every hazaras is first hazara than shia,hazaras are peace loving people and never want to go into extrimism,

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  • Nasir
    Mar 29, 2012 - 10:30PM

    Love for hatred for none is the only way forward for Pakistan. But this will not happen until we eradicate all extremist mullahs

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  • MarkH
    Mar 29, 2012 - 10:57PM

    Though the intentions are in the right place, people should stop calling on the SC so much. You’re piling everything on top of them and making them a political force. There are reasons lower courts exist.
    It’s true that someone definitely needs to take notice but, quite honestly, you guys need to start putting the pressure on the ones who aren’t doing anything at all rather than calling on the SC. It’s not their job to run every aspect of the country. Your pressure is misplaced. There are far more people underneath that should be answering your calls. You’re giving them the freedom of continuing to be lazy by diverting the responsibility elsewhere out of desperation, calling on one of the few who have been known to take action. But, them being “one of the few” is the real problem. They should be “one of the many” fighting over jurisdiction of prosecuting the killers.

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  • Sadiq Noyan
    Mar 29, 2012 - 11:25PM

    @shaneel ahmed:
    Allah curse on those who kill innocent people
    Allah curse on those who seek evils
    Allah curse on those who support evils
    Allah curse on those who blindly kill the innocent human beings
    Allah curse on those who kill innocent women and children
    Allah curse on those who kill human fellow for the sack of imaginative paradise
    Allah curse on those who cowardly kill innocents
    Allah is compassionate and he definitely will ask those who seek violence and support violence..

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  • jafer jaferi
    Mar 30, 2012 - 12:07AM

    salam 2 all paki brotherz b brave enough 2 bear the terget killing of innocent hazara communit in quetta.we r proud 2b shia (gulaman e al muhammad)ya Ali ya. AliRecommend

  • Ahmed
    Mar 30, 2012 - 12:10AM

    Though we are showing our sympathy over Hazara community but today when i saw their protestors, irrespective to their actual protest, attacking on the people on the road, attacking on the dwellers residing near them, abusing sahab karams and abusing other muslim scholars. Honestly My sympathy is no more with them.

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  • shahzib khan
    Mar 30, 2012 - 12:57AM

    It’s time to ruin on Mullah Military Alliance “MMA” otherwise this country future is black!Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli
    Mar 30, 2012 - 1:01AM

    @bigsaf
    you means all the bedbugz are innocent?????

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  • Ali Mardan
    Mar 30, 2012 - 1:29AM

    I am 100% sure that either law enforcing agencies are intimidated or they are also part of this massacre. Balochistan Police is the most coward Police force in the world……..shame on you

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  • Salim Ansari
    Mar 30, 2012 - 1:38AM

    @Ahmed: Honestly My sympathy is no more with them.

    They have been through a lot my friend.

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  • XX
    Mar 30, 2012 - 2:38AM

    The question is, who is doing these killings of Hazara? Surely someone would have some sort of an idea about it? Is the media not at liberty to attempt even a slight investigation into this pivotal question?

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  • Daniel Azad
    Mar 30, 2012 - 3:06AM

    Do not kill the innocent HAZARAS…………..! You will regret one day.

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  • Spud
    Mar 30, 2012 - 4:15AM

    The Modus operandi of the so called peaceful Muslims is 1) Train, indoctrinate and brainwash young to conduct Islamic jihad and kill non-Muslims (Jews and Hindus and Christians), Kill other Muslims not belonging to your particular sect and kill innocents (such as the 2 children in France) while shouting Islamic slogans. 2) After such brainwashed people had killed many innocents, deny that the terrorist is Muslim as Muslim cannot do such things. 3) Keep on repeating the process as the people of the world are stupid to see through this.

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  • Syed
    Mar 30, 2012 - 5:12AM

    My hatred towards MQM is turning into understanding. The history is kinda repeating itself, but this time with Hazara. Mahajir (minority) learned it the hard way that in ISLAMIC country like Pakistan you can not just ask for your rights, you have to earn it by putting up a fight and clam your success.
    Hazara has been asking for help for the last 10 years and has lost more than 600 lives. Still knocking Government’s door for their rights.

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  • Abbas Hazara
    Mar 30, 2012 - 9:00AM

    Time will repeat itself on those who doing this action on us!!!

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