Pakistan

Outlawed SSP forms subgroup to avenge killings

jos_lashkar_e_jhangvi_banned1 The banned religio-political outfit of Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) has formed a subgroup with the name ‘Lashkar-e-Islam’ in view of the prevailing target killings of their workers, Daily Times learnt on Thursday.   Intelligence reports have warned of possible sectarian terrorism in the city as the defunct SSP and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LJ) have formed splinter groups including ‘Lashkar-e-Islam’ and ‘Ghazi Force’ to retaliate the target killings of party workers, leaders and clerics belonging to the same school of thought. It is worth mentioning here that the port city remained peaceful for the past couple of years until the bombing on Shia processions late last year. A police official wishing not to be named told Daily Times that the fallout of Swat and Waziristan operation was yet to be seen in Karachi and termed the bomb blasts in the city as a conspiracy to flare up sectarian violence. He said the security agencies had failed to unearth the group behind the bombings, as their alleged mastermind named Shuja Haider remained mysterious for the investigators. The officer pointed out that security agencies had arrested numerous suspects and kept them in custody for months, but they were released when it was realised that none of the arrested men was Shuja Haider. A young man was kept in custody for more than a month and had been interrogated by various agencies, as he was known only as Shajju. The man was released without any charges when the investigators realised he was not the man they were looking for. The people murdered in the last couple of months belonged to the same sect and were affiliated with SSP, Aalmi Majlis Tahaffuz Khatm-e-Nubuwwat or Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam. Meanwhile, agencies have been repeatedly warning of possible sectarianism in the city, and recurring target killings of religious leaders has created a charged environment that might incite sectarian hatred. When contacted, a senior SSP activist said a conspiracy was being hatched to provoke the people of a particular sect, as conspirators were seeking a clash between liberal and religious forces of the city. He said the basic objective of such target killings was to provoke the people of seminaries to get them on the road, as some forces wanted to prove Talibanisation in the city. He added that the agenda could be foreign-based, but local hands were behind the target killings and were continuously fanning sectarianism. Citing a heightened state of anger amongst SSP cadres, a senior police official said some men had abducted two Shia boys from a hostel near the SSP headquarters, Jama Masjid Siddiq-e-Akbar at Nagan Chowrangi, and brutally tortured them before handing them over in a critical condition to the police. The officer said the SSP claimed the boys were caught by the administration when they were stealing valuables from the mosque, but the police settled thecase because they knew the facts. Source: Daily Times

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