5th Day, Shia Hazara Community Protests Against Killing Of 11 Miners

Miners’ Killing: Shia Hazaras Protesting For 5th Straight Day

5th Day, Shia Hazara Community Protests Against Killing Of 11 Miners

In an extreme harsh weather where temperature drops to below freezing point at night, the sit-in protest of minority Shia Hazara community continued on Thursday for the fifth consecutive day in Quetta, the provincial capital of southwestern Balochistan province.

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People have also taken to the streets in several cities across Pakistan, including Karachi, Islamabad and Peshawar, as protesters express anger at the killing of the miners and demand protection for the Shia Hazara community.

On Sunday, unknown assailants had slit the throats of 11 miners in a residential compound near a mine site in Balochistan’s Mach coalfield area. The attack, which was filmed and posted online, was claimed by the militant Islamic State (IS) group.

Since then, thousands of Hazaras have staged a protest along with coffins of their relatives on a road in Quetta. The mourners vow they will not bury the bodies of miners until PM Imran Khan visits them.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Peoples Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) vice-president Maryam Nawaz visited the protesters on Thursday and spoke at length to the Hazara community.

“Pakistan is a country where even the bodies of our deceased loves ones have to protest [for their rights]. We live in a land where everything is expensive — gas, electricity and food — but the blood of our labourers comes cheap,” said the PPP chairman.

Maryam, in reference to the PM, said she knows that the Hazara community were calling upon a ‘shameless’ person to come and meet them.

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“Political differences aside, it is your [Imran Khan] obligation to come here and listen to these people,” she said. “You are a parent yourself. Try to put yourself in their shoes for a moment and understand their pain. For God’s sake have some mercy on these people,” the PML-N leader appealed.

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