"The Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) group has claimed responsibility for most attacks, yet many of its leaders continue to play command and leadership roles and avoid prosecution or otherwise evade accountability. "
London, June 30 - Pakistan should take necessary measures to stop Sunni extremists in Balochistan from killing Hazara and other Shia Muslims, Human Rights Watch said Monday.

A 62-page report documents Sunni militant group attacks on the mostly Shia Hazara community in Balochistan.

Since 2008, several hundreds of Hazara have been killed in steadily worsening targeted violence, including two bombings in the provincial capital Quetta that killed at least 180 people.

Sunni extremists have targeted Hazara with guns and bombs while they participate in religious processions, pray in mosques, travel to work, or just go about daily life, said Human Rights Watch.

There is no travel route, no shopping trip, no school run, no work commute that is safe for the Hazara. The government's failure to put an end to these attacks is as shocking as it is unacceptable.

The ongoing attacks have meant that the half million members of the Hazara community in Quetta live in fear, compelled to restrict their movements, leading to economic hardship and curtailed access to education and employment, Human Rights Watch said.

This oppressive situation has prompted large numbers of Hazara to flee Pakistan for refuge in other countries.

Since 2008, Pakistan's Shia Muslim community has been the target of an unprecedented escalation in sectarian violence as Sunni militants have killed thousands of Shias across the country.

The Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) group has claimed responsibility for most attacks, yet many of its leaders continue to play command and leadership roles and avoid prosecution or otherwise evade accountability.

A number of convicted high-profile LeJ militants and suspects in custody have escaped from military and civilian detention in circumstances the authorities have been unable to explain.


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