Pakistan: Hazara massacre sparks hunger strike


Members of Pakistan’s¬†Hazara people have launched a sit-in and public hunger strike after a massacre targeted the¬†Shi’ite¬†minority at a coal-field in a remote area of¬†Balochistan province¬†on Jan. 3. Hundreds have been blocking a major thoroughfare through the provincial capital,¬†Quetta. Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid was sent in to meet with a delegation of the Majlis-e-Wahdatul Muslimeen (MWM), the¬†organization leading the sit-in, but his offer of compensation to victims’¬†families¬†was rebuffed as insufficient.¬†In the attack, armed men rounded up miners from worker housing at the¬†Machh¬†coal-field in mountainous¬†Bolan district. Those determined to be Hazara, 11 in all, were marched into the hills and summarily shot. Many had their throats slit or were otherwise mutilated. The local franchise of the “Islamic State” claimed responsibility for the massacre. Families of the victims are refusing¬†to bury their loved ones, but have brought the bodies to the site of the sit-in,¬†demanding the Balochistan government either arrest the killers or resign. (IANS, ANI, Dawn, Al Jazeera)

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