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Will ISI Stop Killing Shias ?
|by R C Ganjoo|
The reason behind the continued massacre of Shias in Pakistan is no secret. The Shias do not support the so-called jihad in India or Afghanistan. Pakistan’s secret agency ISI wanted them to either join the jihad and or move out.
Who is killing Shias in Pakistan? The identity of the killers is above board. Some of the caputured Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) terrorists have confessed before courts that they have killed Shias and will do it again. The Shia community of Pakistan holds the state, especially its security establishment, responsible for its genocide. Since the 1980s, Pakistan’s biggest province Punjab has been at the centre of Shia-Sunni sectarian tensions. Balochistan has been hit hard by a wave of Shia killings in the last few years. Hundreds of Shias haves been killed in Northern Areas of Pakistan- Gilgit, Baltistan, Parachinar and Chelas.
The reason behind their killing is very obvious. Shias do not support the so-called Jihad either in India or Afghanistan. Pakistan’s secret agency ISI wanted the Shias to either join Jihad and cooperate or move out. Senge Sering, Director Institute for Gilgit Baltistan Studies, Washington told this journalist that recent attacks on Shias in Karachi happened only after MQM and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi entered into negotiations over vote adjustments. Pakistani secret agencies allow the militant groups to penetrate into the society and kill people.
The LeJ was created in 1995 from the Sipah-e Sahaba Pakistan (SSP), banned by Pervez Musharraf in 2002. It re-emerged under the name of Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat ( ASWJ). Sipah Sahaba was formed in 1985 by conservative Sunni cleric Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi in collusion with the then military dictator Zia-ul-Haq with its manifesto to declare Pakistan a Sunni state, implement Islamic (Sunni) caliphate system in Pakistan and declare Shia non-Muslims in Pakistan.
LeJ, established by two former stalwarts of SSP Riaz Basra and Malik Ishaq, along with the hard-line splinter group of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), have over the last five years, given manpower to Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Both LeJ and JeM are known to have links with the Taliban, Harkat-ul-Mujahideen, Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan(IMU), Jundullah and Al-Qaeda.
Abdul Khalique Hazara, a leader of the Hazara Democratic Party, in an interview told Al Jazeera TV on February18, 2013, "They are trying to promote religious extremism… They are provoking our community to be involved.. they are going to drag us into sectarianism. But our people are very peaceful people”.
According to Pakistan’s alternative media Let Us Build Pakistan (LUBP) report: total Shia genocide till 17 feb 2013: 21336. In 2012 - 1450 killed. From January 2013 to Feb 17, 2013, 269 killed and 459 injured.
The Iranian parliament has said “the savage killing of the oppressed Shias in Pakistan is ... a plot designed by the enemies of Islam led by the United States, Britain, and their friends in the region… The silence of international organizations and the countries that are the self-proclaimed advocates of human rights about this blatant violation of human rights illustrates the bitter reality that today the issue of human rights has become a political tool for major powers, especially the United States.”
According to the CIA World Fact Book and the Middle East Institute, the Shias are 20% of Pakistan’s population which is close to 200 million. It is the second largest religious group in Pakistan and world’s second largest Shia population, second to Iran. The Shias in Pakistan are spread across the country. Their concentration is found in the Gilgit Baltistan province in Northern Pakistan Kurram Agency (with Parachinar as capital). All urban cities - Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar and Quetta - have a sizable Shia population. The Saraiki belt (stretching from Southern Punjab to North Western Punjab) hosts a strong Shia base.
Molvi Sayed Talib Hussain Zaidi, Imam of Masjid Karbala Shae Mardana, Zorbagh, New Delhi, says, “We expect international community to act on humanitarian grounds and pressurize the Pakistani government to ensure the protection of Shia community.”
It is pertinent to note that Takfiri Deobandi terrorists are killing not only Shias but also moderate Sunnis, including Sunni Barelvis, and Doebandis. According to Molana Kalbi Jawwad Shia clergy from Lucknow, “there is a deep conspiracy hatched by Saudia Arabia and US against the Shia community in Pakistan.”
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