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Pakistan: HRCP statement on the attack on Shia Hazara community in Quetta

by admin, 12 April 2019

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Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), April 12, 2019

Press release

HRCP slams attack on Shia Hazara community

Lahore, 12 April 2019. The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has strongly condemned today’s attack in Quetta, which has killed at least 20 people and injured about 48 others. The attack targeted the city’s Shia Hazara community, who live in ‘protected enclaves’ and – given the frequency of such attacks last year – are now accompanied by a police escort when venturing out to buy food and supplies. HRCP’s sources in Quetta say that, in addition to other civilians, at least eight Shia Hazara and one Frontier Constabulary personnel were killed in the attack.

In a statement issued earlier today, HRCP has said: ‘The fact that this incident occurred in a vegetable market that is frequented by the Shia Hazara indicates that they remain consistently vulnerable, despite efforts to help ensure their right to life and security. This reflects a deeper sectarian problem that will not be resolved until the state makes a concerted effort to eliminate militancy and religious extremism. The Shia Hazara have been effectively ghettoised, their movement and assembly restricted, and their ability to conduct business and everyday affairs severely compromised. This is no way to live.

‘It is worth recalling that, according to the National Commission on Human Rights, over 500 Shia Hazara have been killed in targeted attacks in the last five years. As citizens of Pakistan, the Shia Hazara community have the right to live as part of wider society without constant fear of being targeted by militant outfits. Important as it is to provide protection through police and Frontier Constabulary escorts, this is a short-term solution. The state must ensure that law enforcement agencies in Balochistan – who have themselves lost personnel in this and similar attacks – prioritise bringing the perpetrators to justice. It must also send across a clear message that the state will not countenance violence against any religious or ethnic minority.’

Dr Mehdi Hasan


Habib Tahir

Vice-Chair, Balochistan chapter


Statement by Amnesty International: Pakistan: Hazara community must be protected (12 April 2019) ]