According to official sources, a group of Terrorist belonging to Ahle Sunnat Wal Jammat blocked the Karakoram Highway and intercepted a convoy of buses heading towards Gilgit, in the Chillas area , From which Nine Shia passengers were identified , and off loaded from the buses, and then Martyred By firing on them , while the Six buses of the convoy were set on fire.
Earlier, curfew was imposed in Gilgit when four people were killed and 45 injured in clashes following a hand grenade attack.
In the latest development, the ISPR states that the Army has been summoned to Gilgit to control the law and order situation.
The entry points of the city were closed and helicopters hovered over the area.
According to sources The violence started unexpectedly. The Recently Banned Terrorist Outfit Ahl-i-Sunnat group, a reincarnation of the banned Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan, was observing a strike to press the government for the release of its leader, who was Nominated in the FIR of the Kohisatan Killing of Innocent Shia Men . A group of workers of the party reached the Etihad Chowk in Gilgit. When they were trying to force shopkeepers to close their shops, unknown people threw a grenade on them. that injured two policemen and a civilian.
The grenade attack initiated clashes that later killed four people and injured 45 others. The injured were shifted to District Headquarter Hospital.
Different roads were blocked by burning tyres and incidents of aerial firing were also reported.
Within minutes, firing broke out that lasted for about five hours.
It appeared as if the entire city was under attack as firing took place in various localities. Panicked residents holed themselves up in their homes and the streets and markets were rapidly emptied of people.
Law-enforcement personnel were unable to control the situation despite resorting to firing till curfew was imposed and troops appeared on the roads.
The scale of violence could be judged from the fact that an official in the Kashrote Civil Hospital said that more than 50 people had been admitted there and four bodies had still not been claimed by anyone.
Officials at the District Headquarters Hospital said three police personnel had also been brought in for treatment.
Police official Alam Khan from Chilas told Dawn that Superintendent of Police Jamshid Khan had suffered serious injuries.
Another policeman was injured while trying to stop the Members of Banned Terrorist Outfit ASWJ from attacking and destroying buses.
Apart from the deployment of troops, no significant steps were taken by the administration to arrest the miscreants.
The district magistrate of Gilgit said no arrest had been made, adding that the culprits would be apprehended after the troops brought the situation under control.
An official said the mob belonging to the banned Outfit Sipah e Sahaba had blocked the Karakoram Highway. Security forces failed to restore traffic on the highway till late in the night.
Sources said that on the directives of Interior Minister Rehman Malik, mobile phone services were jammed in Gilgit on Wednesday, a day after sectarian violence claimed at least 16 lives and injured over 50 others in Gilgit and Chilas.
The underdeveloped area, otherwise known for its stunning natural beauty and towering peaks, is rarely discussed on the national stage. Communal tensions first emerged in Gilgit-Baltistan during the 1970s, when the princely states were abolished and amalgamated into the Northern Areas. This process, along with the opening of the Karakoram Highway in the mid-1980s, initiated demographic changes as the inhabitants’ traditional way of life began to disappear and ‘settlers’ from other parts of Pakistan started arriving in the area. However, the sectarian conflict in this Shia- and Ismaili-majority region did not reach its current, bloody proportions until the late 1980s when — under Gen Zia’s Dictatorship , which fanned sectarianism & extremism in the country — sectarian and jihadi elements were introduced into the Peaceful area. Communal relations have nosedived since, with periods of uneasy calm sandwiched between regular cycles of deadly violence similar to what we are seeing now.
- 18 Shia Pilgrims Martyred 8 injured in an ambush on a Gilgit Bound Bus by Jundullah (jafrianews.com)
- Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat banned in Pakistan, But still active No action taken against it : Report (jafrianews.com)
- A Shia Under Trial Prisoner , and 2 other Shia men in different Incidents were Targetted and Martyred across Pakistan (jafrianews.com)
- Shia Man Shot By Rangers in Gilgit , Baltistan embraced Martyrdom (jafrianews.com)
- Another Shia Scholar and Principal of the School embraced Martyrdom , injured in firing of the SSP terrorists (jafrianews.com)
- Another Shia Doctor Embraces Martyrdom by the Target Killing of SSP in Karachi (jafrianews.com)
- Young Shia Noha Khawaan embraced Martyrdom by the Target Killing of SSP (jafrianews.com)