On November 16th two policemen deployed to a security checkpoint at the Ismaili Shia community’s residential complex were shot and killed by unknown gunmen. Izzatullah and Muhammad Hussain were travelling in a van from the city center of Quetta to their home in a suburban Hazara town when two unidentified gunmen open fired on their vehicle. Izzatullah was killed at the scene while Muhammad died on his way to the hospital.
Shia Rights Watch condemns the actions taken by these militants against the Hazara community and calls for the Pakistani government to immediately investigate this murder.
In Afghanistan, the continuous murders of Shia Hazaras sparked massive protests in Kabul on November 11th. Thousands of protestors marched throughout West Kabul with coffins carrying the decapitated bodies of seven Shia Hazaras, including several women and children.
“This is a protest to demand justice for the victims who were so mercilessly murdered, we demand justice for people who are being brutally killed by terrorists every day”- Mohammad Hadi, Hazara protestor.
Shia Rights Watch stands with the Shia Hazara community as they demand justice for the wave of terrorist violence that has ravaged their community.
On November 11th a criminal court in Bahrain sentenced a Shia opposition figure to two years in prison on the basis of his political affiliation. Majeed Milad received this sentence for a speech he gave in which he expressed his opinion about political reconciliation between his party (al-Wefaq) and the government.
The sentencing of Majeed Milad is part of an ongoing campaign by the Bahraini government to stamp out any political dissent in the country. Basic civil and political rights have been violated by the regime and this has largely happened without any substantial condemnation from the international community. Shia Rights Watch condemns the arrests of political prisoners and demands the immediate reversal of his sentence and the release of all political prisoners.
Iraq has seen the continuation of senseless violence directed against Shia communities around the country. On Friday November 13th bombings targeting Shia communities in Baghdad killed at least 15 people. One such attack was a suicide bombing inside the Al-Ashara al-Mubashareen mosque during a funeral. This attack killed 13 people and wounded 33.
The second attack occurred in Sadr City where two roadside bombs were detonated near a Shia place of worship, killing at least 2 people and wounding nine.
No group has yet to take responsibility for these attacks but these attacks closely resemble those perpetrated by ISIS.
In an attack which rocked the country, a suicide bombing in a Shia suburb of Beirut killed at least 37 people and wounded 181 on November 12th. Two suicide bombers detonate themselves on a busy street in the Burj al-Barajneh neighborhood of Beirut. Local media sources are saying this is the deadliest bombing in the country since the conclusion of its civil war which ended in 1991.
ISIS has taken responsibility for this attack but this claim has yet to be independently verified. Burj al-Barajneh is being referred to as a Hezbollah stronghold but it is clear that this indiscriminate attack in an area with a large civilian presence was not merely an attack on Hezbollah but an attack on Shia Muslims. This attack mirrors the vicious attacks ISIS perpetrates in Iraq, Syria, and Saudi Arabia.
Shia Rights Watch strongly condemns this brutal attack and calls on the Lebanese government to ensure the protection of religious groups within their borders.