5 dead in attack targeting Shia Hazaras in Quetta

Pakistan Forward

QUETTA -- Two gunmen on a motorbike Monday (October 9) attacked a vehicle carrying Shia vegetable sellers as it left Quetta, killing five people, police said.

"The local police escort the Shia vegetable sellers daily... one of the vehicles today fell victim to sniper fire after it got separated from the rest of the escort," Quetta Deputy Inspector General of Police Abdul Razzaq Cheema told AFP.

The gunmen killed three Shias from the Hazara ethnic minority as well as the van driver and a passer-by, he said.

One vegetable seller suffered several bullet wounds but survived.

Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri condemned the sectarian attack and asked the provincial police chief to submit a report on the incident, The Express Tribune reported.

Home Minister Mir Sarfraz Bugti expressed solidarity with the victims and their families.

"I want to assure you that the provincial government will fight against all terrorists till we purge them from our peaceful soil," he said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but Taliban militants have targeted Shia Hazaras in the past.

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