Gunmen kill leader of hard-line Sunni group in Pakistan

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Originally published on December 7, 2013

The provincial leader of a hard-line Sunni group was shot dead by gunmen in Lahore in eastern Pakistan on Friday (December 6).

Shamsur Rehman, the provincial president of the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jama group (ASWJ), was reportedly going to his home after praying at a mosque on Ravi road in Lahore. Two assailants riding on a motorcycle opened fire at his vehicle before fleeing. He was rushed to a hospital soon after the attack but was later pronounced dead. His driver and a passer-by were wounded from the attack. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack so far.

The murder has sparked protests in the country. Around 150 protesters had gathered in the capital of Islamabad. Police were deployed to prevent further violence. Extra police were deployed to Shi'ite mosques in Islamabad and in Karachi.

According to Reuters, the ASWJ group was formed by members of the banned organization Sipah-e-Sahaba, which had repeatedly stated that it wanted to expel Shi'ites from Pakistan.

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