Pakistan: Shiite muslims continue protest after blasts
Posted on: 09:10 AM IST Jan 13, 2013
Karachi: Scores of Shiite Muslims took to the streets of Karachi, Pakistan to protest against the Quetta killings. More than a hundred people, predominantly of the Shiite sect, were killed after bomb attacks there earlier this week.
Protests began in Quetta on Friday when people staged protests and refused to bury the dead. They huddled around more than 80 bodies, most of them wrapped in white shrouds and covered with plastic sheets to protect them from the rain.
Hazara Shia leaders spurned a request from federal Religious Affairs Minister Khurshid Shah and provincial Governor Zulfiqar Magsi to bury the dead, saying their protest would continue till the army took control of Quetta, the capital of Balochistan province. The Shia leaders demanded targeted operations against militants and the imposition of Governor's Rule.
Though the protest began over 30 hours ago, the Shia leaders complained that no ministers or elected representatives of Balochistan had met them to express solidarity or to discuss their demands. Many protesters shouted slogans against the government and the militant groups that have targeted the Shias.
Religious Affairs Minister Shah ruled out the deployment of the army, saying the Prime Minister had already directed the paramilitary Frontier Corps to exercise all powers of the police to assist the civil administration in maintaining law and order. He also dispelled the possibility of governor's rule in Balochistan.
(With Additional Inputs From PTI)