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Five Shiites gunned in Karachi

30 Oct 2016 | By Mansi Motwani

Five people including one woman died and six were injured in a firing incident in Karachi.

This occurred outside a Shiite Muslim doctor's home, where several persons had come together for a majlis (religious meeting).

According to reports, "Almost 100 people were attending the majlis but there were no proper security arrangements for them."

In context: The attack in Karachi

BackgroundSectarian violence in Pakistan

Attacks provoked by feelings of antagonism towards a certain sect are classified as 'sectarian attacks'.

Sunni muslims and Shiite muslims are the two largest sects in the religion of Islam; violence between the two has been the reason for the death of many.

Sunni extremists usually target the Shiite's in their places of worship emphasizing religious differences between the two.

Perpetrators of violence

Sunni militant groups such as Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, Sipah-e-Sahaba, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (affiliates of Al-Qaeda), Jundallah (affiliates of ISIS) are mainly responsible for violence perpetrated by Sunni extremists.
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30 Oct 2016Five Shiites gunned in Karachi

Unfolding of events

The IncidentUnfolding of events

According to the police, 5 assailants on motorcycles stopped outside a house where a Muharram majlis was being held for women.

1 attacker fired indiscriminately at a tent set up for men; 4 men died and the wounded were taken to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital and the Aga Khan University Hospital.

Witnesses stated that no police guard was present for security purposes.

No information

According to the chief police of Sindh Police, A.D. Khowaja, "The organizers did not inform the police about the majlis."

InformationSome statistics about attacks on Shiite muslims

According to reports, this attack is the 4th of its kind against Shiite muslims and the 3rd one attacking a majlis for women since Muharram.

Approximately 20% of Pakistan's populaton of 190 million people are Shiite muslims.

Since the year 2002, more than 2,500 Shiite muslims have lost their lives in sectarian attacks against them.

As of 2016, the death toll is 23 people.

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Lashkar-e-Jhangvi's claim

The Al Alami faction of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi claimed responsibility for the attack, its spokesperson stating that "there is no room for the enemies of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad in Pakistan."