Election Violence in Karachi, Pakistan

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And a weekend of violence in Pakistan. Over 30 people died as target killings continued in Karachi. The violence started ahead of by-elections to replace a lawmaker killed in August.

Karachi is slowly returning to some form of normalcy after a weekend of attacks that left at least 34 people dead.

The killings started on Saturday evening ahead of by-elections to replace a lawmaker of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, or MQM.

The MQM is blaming a rival political party for the killings.

The province's home minister says the gunmen attacked people from different ethnic and political groups.

[Zulfiqar Mirza, Home Minister, Sindh Province]:
"Twenty-five people are dead and 40 plus of our brothers have been injured and are under treatment in hospitals."

Hundreds of targeted killings this year have raised concerns that violence would escalate and create a new crisis for the U.S.-backed federal government.

However, city residents say many people are taking advantage of the situation to settle their personal scores.

[Syed Sarem Ali, Local Resident]:
"They are taking advantage of the situation to take revenge on old enemies. Most of target killings are actually being carried out by those involved in long-time personal feuds."

And it's this rivalry that has quite often turned to violence on the streets here in Karachi.

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