Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Pakistan hangs two for sectarian murder

03 February 2015, 10:18

Karachi - Pakistan hanged two sectarian militants on Tuesday for the murder of a Shiite Muslim doctor in Karachi, officials said, the latest executions since the government ended a moratorium on the death penalty.

Attaullah, alias Qasim, and Mohammad Azam were convicted of killing doctor Ali Raza in 2001 at the busy Soldier Bazaar area of Pakistan's largest city, which is racked by rising sectarian violence.

A total of 22 people have now been executed since the government brought back hangings in terror cases amid public outrage over a Taliban massacre at a school that left 150 people dead.

"They were hanged at 6:30 this morning and their bodies have been handed to their relatives," a prison official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The convicts were both members of the banned Sunni militant outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), he added.

Unknown attackers detonated a low-powered bomb near two schools in Karachi Tuesday and left a note at the scene warning of more violence if the hanging of militants did not stop.

Pakistan has suffered a rising tide of sectarian violence in recent years, most of it perpetrated by hardline Sunni Muslim groups such as LeJ against minority Shiites, who make up around 20 percent of the population.

The latest sectarian outrage was on Friday, when a suicide bomber killed 61 people at a Shiite mosque in the southern Pakistani district of Shikarpur.

It was the deadliest attack targeting Shiites in Pakistan since February 2013, when 89 were killed in a market bombing in the southwestern city of Quetta.

Anti-Shiite attacks have been increasing in recent years in Karachi, Quetta, the northwestern area of Parachinar and the far northeastern town of Gilgit.

Also read: Nine in Pakistan die from carbon monoxide poisoning

Around 1,000 Shiites have been killed in the past two years in Pakistan, with many of the attacks claimed by LeJ.

The country has stepped up its fight against militants since the Taliban school massacre in the northwestern city of Peshawar in December.

Heavily armed gunmen went from room to room at the army-run school gunning down 150 people, most of them children, in an attack that horrified the world.

In the aftermath the government ended a six-year moratorium on executions, restoring them for terror-related cases, and pledged to crack down on all militant groups.

The roads outside Karachi Central Prison were closed to traffic overnight as a security measure before the hangings.

Both the murderers were arrested in 2004 and tried in an Anti-Terrorism Court, which handed down the death sentence.

The United Nations, the European Union, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have called on Pakistan to re-impose its moratorium on the death penalty.

Rights campaigners say Pakistan overuses its anti-terror laws and courts to prosecute ordinary crimes.

There are also concerns that death row convicts from cases not related to terrorism could be executed.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...