KARACHI: Three people were shot dead in the city’s North Karachi area Friday afternoon in what police suspect is a sectarian attack.
The victims, all of whom belong to the Shia community, had just offered Friday prayers at the Najaf Imambargah, said Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Central Investigation Arab Mahar.
“The victims were riding a motorbike and were attacked near Shafiq Mor,” the police official said.
This is the first major incident of sectarian violence in Karachi in 2016. Although incidents of sectarian violence have decreased over the past year, it remains prevalent as professionals continue to be targeted on the basis of their faith, Kamran Arif, co-chairperson of the Human Rights Commission Pakistan (HRCP) said earlier.
An HRCP report released in April said 2015 saw 58 incidents of sectarian violence – nearly half as many as those in 2014. Several thousand citizens belonging to religious minority communities are reported to have left the country over the past few years “on account of faith-based violence, discrimination and persecution”.