Gunmen kill 6 people in southwest Pakistan

AP News
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Posted: May 06, 2011 3:07 AM

Assailants using rockets and guns attacked a group of people exercising at an open soccer field in southwestern Pakistan on Friday, killing six of them and wounding 13, police said.

Senior police official Hamid Shakil said the attackers fled quickly toward the nearby mountains after the attack on the outskirts Quetta, which is the capital of southwestern Pakistan's impoverished Baluchistan province.

About 50 people were exercising at the time of the attack, he said.

"These miscreants fired some rockets and then opened fire at the people who were exercising," he said, adding that some of the wounded people were listed as being in critical condition at a hospital.

Shakil said it appeared to be a sectarian attack as the victims belonged to the minority Shiite sect. He said police officers had launched a search in an efforts to trace and arrest the attackers.

Pakistan has a history of sectarian violence. Although most majority Sunnis and Shiites live peacefully together, small extremist groups on both sides often target each other's leaders and activists.