Pakistani Shias, rights activists reject HRCP’s statement on Shia killings in Pakistan

by admin

Related posts: Intellectual dishonesty in misrepresenting Shia massacres in Pakistan

Petition: Silence of Human Rights Organizations on Shia Genocide in Pakistan

Laibaah, the liberal fascist, must refrain from attacking human rights defenders

Pakistani human rights activists including Shia activists have rejected a very weak, formal statement by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan on the Mastung massacre, which:

  1. fails to name and condemn the Deep State for its institutional support to the SSP-TTP footsoldiers who are killing Shia Muslims and other minority communities in Pakistan.
  2. wrongly presents the ongoing Shia massacres by the SSP-TTP proxies of the deep state as a routine Sunni-Shia sectarianism.
  3. fails to provide a bigger picture of the ongoing Shia massacres which are currently taking place in Parachinar, D.I.Khan, Karachi, Quetta and elsewhere.
  4. does not provide exact statistics on Shia killings in Pakistan in recent years.

One wonders why doesn’t Zohra Yusuf and her colleagues in HRCP show some courage and integrity by modelling the bold and honest statement which was issued today by the Asian Human Rights Commission on the ongoing Shia massacres in Pakistan highlighting the complicity of Pakistan army and judiciary.

Lack of action emboldened sectarian killers: HRCP
Date:21 September 2011

Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has slammed the killing of at least 29 Shia pilgrims in Tuesday’s attack on their bus near Mastung

Lahore, September 21: The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has slammed the killing of at least 29 Shia pilgrims in Tuesday’s attack on their bus near Mastung, calling the absence of security for them outrageous and adding that the killers had been emboldened by a persistent lack of action against sectarian militant groups.

A statement by the Commission said on Wednesday: “HRCP is appalled by the gruesome killing of Shia pilgrims near Mastung and finds the utter lack of protection for them outrageous, particularly when pilgrims travelling in the area had been attacked previously and were known to be at risk. HRCP is equally shocked by the official line that the authorities were not given prior intimation about the pilgrims’ bus. How convenient that instead of finding those who failed to perform their duty, the victims have been blamed. This just adds insult to injury. What good are the checkpoints set up everywhere if they cannot even find out if a vehicle using the road needs additional security? [Will the HRCP explain why it has failed to document and publish data on Shia massacres which are on going since  1988 in various parts of Pakistan including but not limited to recent massacres in Dear Ismail Khan, Parachinar, Quetta and Karachi?]

Tuesday’s attack is a failure on many levels and exposes once again the diminishing writ of the state. HRCP believes that continued sectarian bloodshed across the country, particularly in Balochistan, is a direct consequence of the authorities’ perpetual failure to take note of sectarian killings in Quetta which have been going on for many years. It is difficult to comprehend why no action has been taken against the banned militant group that has claimed responsibility for this ghastly attack and for numerous sectarian killings earlier. How do they still manage to roam free with their weapons and vehicles? [Is it a matter of authorities’ failure to take note of sectarian killings or does this relate to the institutional support available to LeT, JeM, LeJ and other jiahdi / sectarian organizations by the Deep State? What about the release of known terrorists such as Malik Ishaq, Hafiz Saeed, Qari Saifullah Akhtar by the ISI-backed Supreme Court?]

The official condemnations that have followed the attack give little comfort to the bereaved families and no one buys the oft-repeated vows of action which never materialise. [Is this very statement which comprises only half truths about the nature of threat to Shia Muslims and other minority communities really comforting?] There is a complete breakdown of writ of the state with the citizens finding themselves increasingly on their own. We fear that the utter lack of competence and inability to adequately respond to the security situation is bound to contribute to further bloodshed. The government must move beyond rhetoric and its current casual and reactive approach to law and order challenges and start functioning as a responsible authority.”

Zohra Yusuf
[Thanks, Zohra, but no thanks!]

For Pakistani Shia Muslims, it is funeral after funeral.

Reaction of Pakistani Shias and rights activists to Shia massacres

The Pakistani government came under heavy criticism from Shia Muslims and rights activists on Wednesday after 29 people died in the worst attacks on the Shia minority for a year. Angry Shia Muslims observed a strike in Balochistan”s provincial capital Quetta today to protest the massacre of 29 members of the minority community by militants even as a top Pakistani rights watchdog said the killings had exposed the “the diminishing writ of the state”.The strike was observed in Shia-dominated areas of the southwestern city of Quetta, including Hazara Town, Ali Town, Alamdar Road and Marriabad. Markets and shops remained closed and traffic was thin on roads in these areas. Hundreds of people, including women and children, staged demonstrations and took out rallies to protest the killing of 29 Shias at Mastung, 40 km from Quetta, yesterday.Twenty-six Shia pilgrims travelling to Iran were forced out of a bus by militants and lined up before being shot.Gunmen subsequently targeted another group of Shias travelling to retrieve bodies on the outskirts of Quetta and killed three men.The banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi claimed responsibility for the attack on the bus in calls to the media in Quetta.These were the deadliest attacks on Shias in Pakistan since September 4 last year, when a suicide bomber killed 57 people at a rally in Quetta. (Source)

22 buried in Hazara Town: Twenty-two pilgrims who were killed in the attack were buried at the Hazara Town graveyard in Quetta today. A large number of people attended the burial, which was followed by a protest to condemn the incident and demand the immediate arrest of the culprits. Out of the 26 killed, 22 belonged to Quetta, two were from Loralai and two from Afghanistan. The bodies of those belonging to Loralai and Afghanistan have been sent to their respective areas. The Shia community in Balochistan came under attack when 29 people were killed in two separate, targeted incidents claimed by banned militant outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi.

At least 26 people were killed and six others injured in Ganjidori area of Mastung, about 30 kilometres southeast of Quetta, when a group of armed men attacked a passenger bus carrying Shia pilgrims from Quetta to Iran. Hours later, three more people, hailing from the Hazara community, were gunned down near Akhtarabad area of Quetta as their rescue team made its way to the site of the bus attack. Two others were also shot. (Source)

11 Responses to “Pakistani Shias, rights activists reject HRCP’s statement on Shia killings in Pakistan”

  1. Some of Martyred Names (Names of Shohada):

    1. Ghulam raza .
    2. Mohd.jan .
    3. Gul muhammad .
    4. Gul shah .
    5. Dur ahmed .
    6. Mohd.yar .
    7. Mohd.jan .
    8. Nematullah .
    9. Ali jan .
    10. Abdul naseeb .
    11. Mohd mehdi .
    12. Aziz.ullah .
    13. Ali mohd .
    14. Mohsin ali .
    15. Syd naimatullah .
    16. Mohd kalim .
    17. Ali mohd .
    18 Hameed Ullah .
    19. Ahsal.Ullah.
    20. Mohd Musa .

  2. Condemnation of Massacre of Shi’a Pilgrims outside Quetta, Pakistan
    Universal Muslim Association of America (UMAA)

    Posted Sep 20, 2011 •Permalink • Printer-Friendly Version
    Condemnation of Massacre of Shi’a Pilgrims outside Quetta, Pakistan

    The Universal Muslim Association of America (UMAA) strongly condemns the barbaric killings of twenty-six Shi’a Muslims just outside Quetta, Pakistan on Tuesday September 20, 2011. The victims were on their way for pilgrimage to Holy Shrines in Iran when their bus was stopped in the Mastung district of Baluchistan by at least four assailants. The victims were subsequently forced out of the bus, lined up, and shot at point blank range, resulting in twenty-six deaths and at least six wounded individuals. No help or law enforcement arrived for an hour following this incident.

    These heinous crimes to humanity and, in particular, to Shi’a Ithna Asheri Muslims, committed by Al Qaeda and the Taliban continue to occur and remain unchecked in the region. Unfortunately, the government of Pakistan and, in particular, the government of Baluchistan has completely failed to protect the lives of its citizens and therefore has no right to govern if it does not have the will or ability to take such responsibility. Thus far, not a single terrorist from this region has been caught, tried, and punished for their crimes against humanity.

    It is futile to contact Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States, Husain Haqqani, and Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Gillani because of the ineffectiveness they have shown regarding counter-terrorism in the past. We strongly urge United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to personally intervene, investigate, and halt this bloodshed of innocent lives. It is critical for an international authority such as the United Nations to take an unwavering stance on this issue, so as to remove the lawlessness and human rights violations that remain rampant in the region.

    Dr. Ehtisham Abidi

    President, Universal Muslim Association of America

  3. an equally weak statement by Amnesty:


    21 September 2011
    The killing of 29 Shi’a Muslims in Pakistan’s Balochistan province highlights the failure of Pakistani authorities to address sectarian violence across the country, Amnesty International said today.

    On Tuesday, 26 Shi’a pilgrims on their way to Iran were lined up in front of their bus and shot dead in Mastung, Balochistan.

    Another three people were killed as they tried to bring victims of the attack to a hospital in Quetta, the provincial capital.

    Lashkar-e Jhangvi, an anti-Shi’a extremist group, claimed responsibility for the killings.

    “Attacks such as these have occurred countrywide this year and have increased in Balochistan. These are not random killings but demonstrate the deliberate targeting of the Shi’a by armed groups,” said Amnesty International’s Asia-Pacific director Sam Zarifi.

    “Armed clashes between Sunni and Shi’a militant groups have regularly occurred in past decades, but recent attacks have predominantly targeted unarmed Shi’a Muslims in their homes, shops or while travelling, and even in their places of worship,” said Sam Zarifi.

    “Alarmingly, an increasing number have been Shi’a pilgrims, like yesterday’s victims. These attacks prove that without an urgent and comprehensive government response, no place is safe for the Shi’a,” Sam Zarifi said.

    “The Muslim holy month of Moharram, which starts at the end of November, is particularly significant for Shi’as and the potential for sectarian violence and targeting of Shi’as is very high. Pakistani authorities must ensure they are prepared to protect all their citizens regardless of religious affiliation.”

    This year, Amnesty International has recorded details of at least 15 attacks specifically targeting Shi’a Muslims across the country, from Quetta in the west and Khurram tribal agency on the north-west border with Afghanistan, to the heartland province of Punjab and the city of Karachi in the south.

    “Successive governments have failed to address the increasingly explicit threats faced by Shi’a Muslims from groups like Lashkar-e Jhangvi, operating openly in the Punjab and Karachi and apparently striking their victims at will in Balochistan and other parts of the country.”

    “For too long the Pakistan government and its security forces have abdicated their responsibility to defend everyone in the society from this deadly form of discrimination.”

    “Continued failure to address sectarian violence will only exacerbate the general breakdown in law and order in Pakistan. Only urgent steps to protect the rights of all people and bring the perpetrators to justice in trials consistent with international fair trial standards will stem the slide.”

  4. Massacre in Mastung
    By Saba Imtiaz Wednesday, September 21, 2011 – 4:17 PM Share

    Twenty-six Shi’a Muslim pilgrims, en route to Iran, died at the hands of the militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) in Baluchistan’s Mastung area Tuesday evening. According to news reports and eyewitness accounts, attackers armed with Kalashnikovs and rocket launchers stopped the bus and forced passengers to get off. While women and children were reportedly spared, they witnessed the execution. A car arriving to rescue the pilgrims was also fired on, and three people died in the second attack.

    According to the bus driver “The attackers asked passengers to step out of the bus and shot them after identifying them as Shi’as”

    The attack was not an isolated incident, but was instead part of a systematic campaign of violence in the province directed towards the Shi’a. In July, 18 people were killed within 16 hours in Quetta in targeted attacks by the LeJ, including seven pilgrims waiting for transportation to Iran. On the Eid-ul-Fitr holiday, a suicide bomber reportedly intended to attack the congregation of 25,000 people praying at a mosque in the Shi’a-populated area of Marriabad in Quetta. His explosives-laden car still killed 12 Shi’a and injured 32.

    The campaign of anti-Shi’a violence has largely been directed towards the predominantly Shi’a Hazara community in Baluchistan. According to a recent report in Newsline, “at least 347 Hazaras have been killed in [targeted] killings and suicide and other attacks since 1999. Of the 328 Hazaras killed up until December 31 last year, as many as 105 had been killed in 2010 alone.”And government inaction is only helping the problem spread. According to Amnesty International, “Successive [Pakistani] governments have failed to address the increasingly explicit threats faced by Shi’a Muslims from groups like Lashkar-e Jhangvi, operating openly in the Punjab and Karachi and apparently striking their victims at will in Balochistan and other parts of the country.

    The LeJ, the militant wing of the virulently anti-Shi’a Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP), has claimed responsibility for several of the attacks, and has vowed to kill more Shi’a. The Deobandi group’s stronghold is in southern Punjab, and since its inception in 1985, it has spread its campaign of anti-Shi’a incitement and violence throughout Pakistan.

    The group is officially banned in Pakistan, but the ban has been far from effective. The state supported the creation of the SSP, as General Zia-ul-Haq’s regime propped up Deobandi movements to counter its perceived rival Iran.

    Zia’s death in 1988 did not end state patronage of such groups. Hundreds of Shi’a have been killed since then, and the state continues to support groups such as the LeJ, and has called on its leaders for assistance in times of crisis. For instance, LeJ leader Malik Ishaq was reportedly flown out of jail by the Pakistan Army to talk to the militants that had stormed the army headquarters in Rawalpindi in 2009. Ishaq was released this year after serving 14 years in jail. He was accused of killing 70 people and faced charges in 44 cases.

    It was revealed after his release that his family was given a stipend by the Punjab government while he was in jail, and that he had been provided with police guards — while the witnesses who testified against him lived in fear of possible repercussions. Ishaq’s freedom — after being acquitted in 34 cases and being bailed out on 10 — was met with a display of adoration by his supporters, who showered rose petals on him.

    Since then, he has embarked on a public speaking tour, addressing crowds in Sindh and Punjab. His message has been consistent: he believes he was on the right path, and vows to work to further the SSP’s mission. And despite knowing that the intelligence services and government are keeping an eye on him, the crowds still show up to hear Ishaq speak, helping validate the belief held by Ishaq and his followers that the SSP’s mission is right.

    In a letter to The Friday Times journal, the Pakistan Ulema Council has urged “different segments of society to stop making assumptions about Ishaq’s release and help him become a useful citizen” while heralding his services to the army in the 2009 headquarters siege. But for anyone who has seen Ishaq’s speeches, readily available on several social media platforms, it is hard to not foresee a bloody future ahead for the Shi’a community in Pakistan. The speeches conclude with the crowds chanting anti-Shi’a slogans, while in Balochistan, a bloodied community continues to mourn its dead.

    Saba Imtiaz works as a correspondent for The Express Tribune newspaper and can be reached at


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