Pakistan women refuse to bury dead after bomb attack

Feb 19, 2013, 09:40 IST | Agencies

Thousands of Pakistani Shia women have refused for a second day to bury victims of a devastating bomb attack on their community, demanding protection against record levels of sectarian violence.

Demonstrators poured onto the streets across the country, shutting down the largest city Karachi and closing the road from the capital to Islamabad airport, in angry protest at Saturday’s bombing that killed at least 81 people in Quetta.

No honour for the dead: Pakistani Shia Muslims hold a banner on the second day of protests against a bomb attack in Quetta. Pic/AFP

Up to 4,000 women blocked a road in the southwestern city, vowing to continue their sit-in that began late on Sunday until the authorities take action against the extremists behind the attack which also wounded 178 people.

Two girls aged seven and nine were among the dead after the bomb, nearly a tonne of explosives hidden in a water tanker, tore through a crowded market in a neighbourhood dominated by ethnic Hazara Shia Muslims.

The attack came just over a month after suicide bombers killed 92 people at a hall in another Hazara neighbourhood of Quetta. Protesters are furious at the authorities’ failure to tackle rising attacks on Shiites.               

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