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Friday, August 17, 2012

Ban Ki-moon condemns Shias killings in Pakistan



Pakistani's shift the dead body of a Shia Muslim at a hospital in Ghari Hbibullah in the northwestern district of Mansehra, August 16, 2012.

Fri Aug 17, 2012 10:14AM GMT

The UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has strongly condemned the killing of 20 Shia Muslims in a bus attack in northern Pakistan.

In a released statement on Thursday, Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky said the UN leader slammed the "appalling" attack.

"The secretary general expresses his outrage over such deliberate attacks on people due to their religious beliefs in Pakistan," said the statement. "He also extended his heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to the government and people of Pakistan."

Gunmen dragged the Shia passengers off a bus in the northwestern district of Mansehra on Thursday and killed them at point blank range. Several others were injured during the attack. The victims were going from Rawalpindi to Gilgit -- a heavily-Shia-populated area.

Meanwhile, on the same day at least three more Shia Muslims were killed by gunmen in the city of Quetta in the southwestern Pakistani province of Balochistan.

Following the attack, hundreds of Pakistani people took to the streets in the southern city of Karachi to protest against the killings of Shia Muslims.

Hundreds of Shia Muslims have been killed in various parts of the violence-hit country over the past few months.

MSH/HMV/MA

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