Nine killed in Quetta twin attacks

Katrina Barker
April 5, 2018

The unidentified men opened fire from their motorcycle on a Christian family of five aboard a rickshaw and traveling through the city of Quetta, in the province of Baluchistan, according to U.S. News.

The shooting, which targeted a single family, occurred in the western city of Quetta, the provincial capital. "It appears to have been a targeted attack", Balochistan IG Moazzam Jah Ansari said. 'It was an act of terrorism'.

Islamic State terrorist outfit claimed responsibility for the attack, a claim which was yet to be verified by investigators.

In a statement, the terror group said that a "covert unit" of IS militants "managed to target a number of the combatant Christians". It added the jihadists "shot them with a pistol, which resulted in the killing of four of them, and all praise is due to Allah".

In December of a year ago, a suicide bomb and gun attack targeting a Sunday service at a church in Quetta killed at least eight people and wounded over 56. Around two per cent of Pakistan's population are Christians. Dead bodies were shifted to Civil Hospital.

Pakistan reinstated the death penalty and continued military trials for captured militants in response to a 2014 terrorist attack on a Peshwar school. The roads in between Christian communities and places of worship, however, remain vulnerable. In December, ISIS militants attacked a church compound in Quetta, killing at least nine people. Around 2 percent of Pakistan's 200 million people are Christians.

Also in 2016, an Easter Sunday bombing targeting Christians at an amusement park in the eastern city of Lahore which killed at least 69 people, mostly Christians.

Pervez Maseeh's widow, Shama Parveen, told SAMAA that her brothers Imran and Tariq had come to Quetta after 12 years from Punjab to celebrate Easter with the family.

Pakistan is ranked fifth on Christian support organization Open Doors' 2018 Word Watch List of the countries where it is most hard to be a Christian.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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