Quetta: Dozens held in operation as Hazaras bury the dead
QUETTA: Security forces detained at least 25 suspected individuals during a full–scale operation in Mastung’s Kanak and Derringer areas, on Friday, as the Hazaras buried their relatives who were killed in a bombing on their bus.
The operation was launched Friday morning by security forces and included personnel from the Frontier Corps, police, the Anti–Terrorist Force (ATF), Levies and recruits from Balochistan Constabulary. The forces are also being assisted by helicopters and armoured personnel carriers. The entry and exit points of Kanak and Derringer were sealed shortly before the search operation went underway. The arrested suspects were shifted to Quetta.
Meanwhile, the bodies of 29 people who were killed in a deadly suicide attack on a bus in Mastung were laid to rest on Friday. Amidst strict security arrangements, 25 victims were buried in Bahisht-e-Zainab graveyard on Quetta’s Alamdar Road and four in Bahisht–e-Zahra graveyard in Hazara Town. A large number of women gathered to pay their respects to the deceased. The funeral prayers for the victims had been offered in Quetta’s Punjabi Imambargah.
The Hazara community on Thursday agreed to end its protest sit-in after Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan assured them that strict action would be taken against elements that carried out the attack. The attack had been claimed by terrorist organisation Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, which has warned of more such attacks. Hundreds of Hazara men, women and children held a protest sit-in at Quetta’s Shuhada Chowk for about 48 hours in extremely cold weather against the killing of their community’s members.